ANAHEIM, CA - SEPTEMBER 26: Pitcher Koji Uehara #19 of the Texas Rangers receives high fives in the dugout after striking out Torii Hunter (not pictured) of the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim in the seventh inning at Angel Stadium of Anaheim on September 26, 2011 in Anaheim, California. The Rangers defeated the Angels 4-3. (Photo by Jeff Gross/Getty Images)
In a bit of a surprising move, the Texas Rangers have lost reliever Koji Uehara to the Boston Red Sox.
The fact that Uehara signed elsewhere isn't too shocking, although his selection had reportedly come down between Texas and going back to Baltimore, who traded him to Texas in 2011 for Tommy Hunter and Chris Davis. He was said to be most comfortable in Baltimore, where he still owns a home.
So the fact Uehara, who put up a stellar season in 2012 after struggling in 2011 after the trade, signed with Boston? That's a little more surprising. And the fact he signed a one-year deal? Wow.
The terms of the deal are not yet known, but you'd have to think the Rangers would've offered him at least one year, if not multiple years. At 37, Uehara is coming off a year in which he posted a 1.75 ERA with his usual insane strikeout-walk ratio of 43:3.
With Uehara now out of the picture, and Mike Adams garnering all kinds of interest, the Rangers are going to be in a search for some new bullpen arms. Yes, they signed Joakim Soria, but he won't be ready until May, at the earliest. They'll also get Neftali Feliz back around July, but who knows how effective he'll be out of the gate?
This deal is perplexing to say the least. It seemed as though he'd sign with the Rangers or Orioles, and now he takes a one-year deal with the Red Sox? Oh, you have to love the Winter Meetings.