Dodgers Spring Training: Alex Wood Feels Most ‘Complete’ Of His Career
Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

Behind Clayton Kershaw, Rich Hill and Kenta Maeda, the remaining spots in the Los Angeles Dodgers starting rotation are largely up for grabs. There isn’t a shortage of competition, as Scott Kazmir, Brandon McCarthy, Hyun-Jin Ryu, Brock Stewart, Ross Stripling and Alex Wood will battle throughout the spring to fill in the remaining 40 percent.

Julio Urias at some point figures to factor into the equation as the Dodgers’ fourth or fifth starter, though he’s a candidate to first begin the season in extended Spring Training. Meanwhile, Kazmir, McCarthy, Ryu and Wood are coming off an injury-plagued season.

Wood reported to Spring Training in good health, and joined Clayton Kershaw in throwing live batting practice this week without issue.

According to Ken Gurnick of, Wood believes he’s at the best form of his career:

“My stuff, mechanically, I’m as complete as I’ve ever been. I’m excited about the spring and even more excited about the team we’ve got. I’ve been champing at the bit to get out there.”

Wood enjoyed some success in 2016 prior to having his season derailed by elbow trouble. Wood’s trouble began last May when he was scratched from a scheduled start due to left triceps soreness. He recovered to take the mound on eight days’ rest but was placed on the 15-day disabled list with left posterior elbow soreness the following afternoon.

An MRI revealed a posterior impingement in Wood’s left elbow that required approximately four weeks of rest. He was said to be recovering ahead of schedule in June and projected to return in August.

However, Wood underwent an arthroscopic debridement of his left elbow, and wasn’t reinstated from the 60-day DL until Sept. 20. He was limited to a relief role, one Wood fared well in, but the Dodgers view the 26-year-old as one of the starting pitchers in camp.

Over parts of two seasons with the Dodgers, Wood is 6-10 with a 4.06 ERA, 3.68 FIP and 1.26 WHIP in 26 games (22 starts). He avoided arbitration with the club during the offseason by agreeing to a one-year, $2.8 million contract.