The righthander’s numbers weren’t as good in 2016 as in previous years (3.45 ERA, 3.51 FIP, eight home runs in 47 innings), but he still doesn’t give up many baserunners (0.957 WHIP, about in line with his numbers in 2014 and 2015).
Uehara served mainly a setup role in 2016 after the Red Sox signed Craig Kimbrel to close. He will turn 42 the day after Opening Day.
Though he’s a former Red Sox player, he has no connection to Theo & Co. The Red Sox signed him as a free agent a year after Theo left Boston. Uehara has also pitched in the major leagues for the Orioles (2009-11) and Rangers (2011-12). He’s pitched in 19 postseason games. Seems like he’d be a welcome addition to the setup corps behind new closer Wade Davis, and the $4.5 million figure quoted seems quite reasonable.
The Cubs' 40-man roster now stands at 37 players.