Uehara continues to shut out batters

Uehara continues to shut out batters
September 7, 2013, 1:15 am
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NEW YORK -- In San Francisco Friday night, Giants starter Yusmeiro Petit fell one out short of a perfect game.

Across the country, Koji Uehara was putting the finishing touches on a perfect game of his own -- sort of.

Uehara pitched the ninth with the Red Sox leading by four and retired all three hitters he faced. That extended Uehara's streak to 27 straight hitters retired, across his last eight appearances.

"It's not really an official record or anything like that,'' said Uehara, dismissing the significance of the stretch.

But Uehara did allow that this run he's been on is probably the best period he's enjoyed since coming to the U.S. and Major League Baseball five seasons ago.

"I guess, just judging from the numbers, it is what it is,'' he said. "But I don't feel any different.''

The 27 straight retired hitters aren't the only evidence to support Uehara's run. He's not allowed a run over his last 27 innings -- covering 24 games -- for the longest such streak in his career and the longest such active streak in the majors.

It was somewhat surprising that Uehara was in the game at all Friday night, since the Sox were leading by four in the bottom
of the ninth.

"He was adamant about getting into that game tonight,'' said manager John Farrell. "The one thing we've been able to do a good job with is (making sure to not) warm him up and then not get him in the game. Even if we were up a couple more runs, he was adamant -- he wanted in the game and you have to respect that want on his part.''

"I just felt that, up to a five-run lead, it's possiblilty for me to get into the game,'' explained Uehara.