After going through the part of their rotation that is largely set, the Los Angeles Dodgers got their first in-game glimpse at Zach Lee and Alex Wood in contests against the San Francisco Giants and Cleveland Indians.
Lee, who is competing to fill the newest vacancy left in the rotation by Brett Anderson’s back surgery, tossed allowed one hit and had one strikeout over two scoreless innings at Scottsdale Stadium.
A leadoff base hit and error by Crawford put Lee in a jam in the first inning with runners on first and second base with no outs. The right-hander worked his way out of trouble by retiring the next three batters faced.
Lee then set the Giants down in order in the second inning. The defense also let Wood down in the first inning on Monday, as Corey Seager committed two errors.
However, prior to Seager’s errors, Wood surrendered a solo home run to Jose Ramriez. After the two errors, Giovanny Urshela connected for a three-run homer.
Wood bounced back from the adversity to end the first inning on a pair of strikeouts. A base hit and error on Trayce Thompson in the second led to the Indians scoring a fifth run, though third unearned, against the southpaw.
All things considered, Wood was generally pleased with his first outing of the spring, according to ESPN’s Doug Padilla:
“It was good to be back out there finally for the first time, but it was one of those weird ones,” Wood said. “I felt good, I felt my stuff was pretty good for the most part. I made maybe one or two bad pitches, but I think the command will come as I keep getting out there. But overall I felt pretty good.”
When the Dodgers opened camp, it was widely believed Wood was bound for the bullpen as the club’s sixth starter. Anderson’s surgery, coupled with Hyun-Jin Ryu likely not returning until May, have elevated Wood to potentially being the Dodgers’ fourth starter come Opening Day.
Prior to Anderson being put on the shelf and Ryu’s date of return loosely being set, the 25-year-old Wood said his expectation is to be part of the Dodgers’ rotation. In 12 starts with Los Angeles last season, the lefty was 5-6 with a 4.35 ERA, 4.10 FIP, 1.27 WHIP and averaged 6.3 strikeouts per nine innings.
Wood battled inconsistency with the Dodgers, though it was largely tied to a bone bruise on his ankle that negatively affected his delivery. He’s since fully recovered from lingering issue.