After striking out Jose Iglesias, Uehara threw an 86-mph fastball in a 1-2 count to Kinsler, who hit a comebacker that struck Uehara in the right wrist. After recovering to throw to first for the final out, Uehara headed to the clubhouse for X-rays. Results were negative, though there is some bruising and swelling.
"It's a very big relief," manager John Farrell said. "Unfortunate that Koji's even in that game to begin with, but after the line drive off the wrist, he was taken for X-rays right here in the ballpark. They've come back negative. I know his spirits were lifted a whole lot, given he's down on one knee at the end of a win on the field. I'm sure he'll be sore, but thankfully there's no fractures or breaks."
There was a fair amount of swelling developing almost immediately after Uehara was hit by the ball, and after the game, Uehara was still in some pain. But initially when he threw to first base, it was an instinctual reaction, and Uehara said he threw softly enough that he didn't feel the effect at first. Afterward was when the pain hit him, putting the closer on his knees.
"Even if something happened, I'd reach for it," Uehara said through an interpreter. "It would have been my responsibility. I consider my whole body as a glove once I release the ball. ... At the second that [the ball] hit me it didn't hurt too much, but after that there was gradual pain that built up."
Right-hander Justin Masterson was brought on in the eighth with a five-run lead. But in the ninth, after a leadoff double and two walks separated by a strikeout, Farrell couldn't afford to let Detroit come clawing back, particularly with the meat of the lineup due up next. Uehara was summoned to get out of a bases-loaded jam and he got Iglesias to strike out swinging on three pitches before inducing the game-ending ground ball.
Catherine Slonksnis is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.