• Alex Wood Bio

  • iga

    September 17, 2020 at 6:30 pm

    Alex Wood – Early Career

    The Atlanta Braves originally drafted Alex Wood in the second round of the 2012 Major League Baseball Draft. The Rome Braves (Class A affiliate) is where he pitched in 2012, where he appeared 13 games, going 4-3, with a 2.22 earned run average, while striking out 52 in the process. At the beginning of the 2013 season with the Mississippi Braves (Class AA affiliate), the leftie had a 1.26 era, while only appearing in 10 games, in the first two months of their season. May 30th, 2013, the Braves promoted him to the big leagues. He debuted that same night. Wood the ninth, he made an appearance to close out a lopsided 11-3 victory against the Toronto Blue Jays.

    On June 18th of the same year, he made his first MLB start. He allowed one earned run in a 4-3 loss in the first game of the doubleheader. The Braves sent him back to the bullpen shortly after. The 2014 season saw him have a .500 year (11-11), posting a 2.78 era in 171.2 innings with 170 strikeouts. Wood only had 20 appearances with the Braves, posting a 7-6 record, 90 K’s, with a 3.54 era.

    Dodger Days

    The date is July 30th, 2015, and that is when we were introduced to this southpaw. Alex Wood was acquired via trade. In fact, he arrived with other players that involved two different teams (Miami Marlins and the Cincinnati Reds) Mat Latos, Michael Morse, Bronson Arroyo, Jim Johnson, Luis Avilan, and Jose Peraza. Upon joining the team, he was 5-6, he struck out 90 batters, with an era of 4.35. In 2016 Wood was able to make ten starts from April to May. His best start during that run came on May 21st against the division rival San Diego Padres. On that outing, he fanned 13 batters in only six innings of labor. That was the first that ANY Dodger reached that accomplishment ever! Think of all of the great Dodger pitchers, and not one of them can claim that feat.

    After the May 30th outing against the Cubs, he reported feeling 100%. He got an MRI, which determined a posterior impingement (overuse and repetitive forced extensions) of his left elbow. This required a stint on the injured list and took him out of action for four weeks. On June 16th, the impingement in his throwing elbow ran its course, and with the help of draining fluids from the elbow, he resumed a throwing program. After the throwing program, a rehab stint was in the cards, and while early reports were good, it turned out he would need elbow surgery.

    September 20th is the next time Alex Wood would rejoin the team in time for the playoff run. The Dodgers did not utilize him in the National League Division Series, so the brought him on the roster for the National League Championship Series. In that series, he was able to pitch two scoreless innings. I remember thinking to myself how good of a season he could have had if it wasn’t for the injuries he sustained. I also kept a close eye on him after the 13 strikeout game in 6 innings, and thought, WOW! That was impressive!

    Road to the World Series

    After the season, he avoided arbitration and signed a deal worth $2.8 million to stay with the LA club. An injury to Rich Hill allowed Wood to start after starting the 2017 campaign in the bullpen. He took the chance and ran with it. Let’s start with winning National League Pitcher of the Month honors for May 8th through the 14th. It was well deserved.

    He racked up 11 scoreless innings and 21 strikeouts over two starts. Wood won National Pitcher of the Month for May with a 5-0 record, 41 strikeouts, and a microscopic 1.27 era. He was also chasing a scoreless streak record that would make Orel Hershiser proud. The scoreless streak lasted 28 innings and was over on June 10th. I forgot to mention that he was the first Dodger to start 10-0 since Don Newcombe. Don freaking Newcombe!

    The Dodgers send him to the Mid Summer Classic along with Cody Bellinger, Justin Turner, Corey Seager, and Kenley Jansen. It was tough for anyone to deny that at that point, he was an all-star. His regular season stats reflected that he went on to win 16 games against three losses, compiled 151 strikeouts, and a 2.72 era. I would say that is a great season, especially when you’re chasing the franchise greats. He had one start allowing three runs on 4 2⁄3 innings pitched in the National League Championship Series.

    In the game four World Series, he only allowed one run in 5 2⁄3 innings. Game seven of that, he held the Astros scoreless in two innings. As for following up on the numbers he produced in 2017 in the 2018 season, it just wasn’t the same. 33 games pitched, nine wins, seven losses, 135 strikeouts, and his era went up to 3.68. Gone was the career year from 2017, and also his velocity had taken a dip as well.

    Coming Back

    Alex Wood was ultimately dealt to the Cincinnati Reds and always outspoken Yasiel Puig, fan favorite Matt Kemp, and Kyle Farmer on December 21st, 2018. His stint with the Reds was also plagued with injuries. In Spring Training 2019, he fought back spasms, and other back ailments, which caused him to have a 1-3 record, with seven games pitched, 30 strikeouts, and an era of 5.80. The once strength and depth of the Dodgers was the starting rotation. It took two massive hits when Hyun-Jin Ryu signed with the Toronto Blue Jays, and Rich Hill signed with the Minnesota Twins. That, however, created an opening for Alex.

    On January 12, 2020, he signed to a one year $4 million deal to return to the team. It looks like his spring training has already started well since working with pitching coordinator Rob Hill. Rob is making sure that Alex can stay consistent with his unique three quarter sidearm delivery. He is working on also eliminating the back problems he encountered in the previous season.

    Stats on MLB.com



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