Koji Uehara may still have one more season in him. The 43-year-old free-agent reliever said that he wants to play one more year before retiring -- assuming he gets a Major League contract offer.
Uehara talked about his future at a baseball clinic in Fukushima, Japan, as first reported by Kyodo News.
One key stipulation for Uehara is that he would not be interested in signing a Minor League contract with a team. The veteran right-hander said that he's been talking with teams but hasn't received an offer, so retirement remains an option.
Despite his age, Uehara was very serviceable last year with the Cubs. He held a 3.98 ERA with 50 strikeouts and 12 walks over 43 innings. Uehara also held a 1.16 WHIP, which, while still impressive, broke a streak of seven straight seasons with a sub-1.00 mark.
If Uehara plays in 2018, it will be his 10th Major League season after spending 10 years with the Yomiuri Giants in Nippon Professional Baseball. However, Uehara hasn't completely shut the door on playing beyond then.
"If I get a major league contract, and I do put up good numbers, then I'll think about another year, but right now I'm focused on just this one year."