MLB free agency has been slow moving this winter — particularly for position players — but has picked up of late for pitchers, and the Los Angeles Dodgers have been connected to that activity.
They recently agreed to terms with Blake Treinen, but saw Pedro Baez join the Houston Astros on a multi-year deal. Now Alex Wood is the latest Dodgers free agent to leave the team as he signed a one-year, $3 million contract with the rival San Francisco Giants.
Wood’s contract includes performance bonuses for games pitched in which he records 10 outs or more. He will receive $125,000 each for 12 and 14 outs; $250,000 each for 16, 18, 20, 22 and 24; $500,000 each for 26, 28 and 30.
Wood is coming off a season in which he went 0-1 with a 6.39 ERA in nine games (two starts) for the Dodgers. He returned to the organization under the expectation of being part of the rotation, and while Dodgers manager Dave Roberts named him the fifth starter, Wood was placed on the 10-day injured list after his season debut — coincidentally against the Giants.
Wood’s recovery did not progress as hoped and therefore he was shifted to the bullpen upon being reinstated. Despite his clear preference to be a starter, the left-hander voiced an understanding with the decision and willingness to pitch in any capacity asked of him.
That carried into the postseason, where Wood was not active until the National League Championship Series. He allowed one run in his first postseason appearance, but then followed it with five scoreless innings over three more games.
The last of which came in Game 6 of the World Series as Wood was part of heroic effort by the Dodgers bullpen. He entered in the third and collected three strikeouts over two perfect innings to keep the Dodgers’ deficit at a minimum.
In signing with the Giants, Wood reunites with Farhan Zaidi. He was general manager of the Dodgers during Wood’s first stint with the organization.
Wood defends Baez
Reports of Baez signing with the Astros was met by some revisionist history in terms of how trusted the right-hander was. Wood addressed the topic, vouching for his former teammate much in the same way Roberts and others with the organization did over recent years.
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