February 2: The A’s introduced in the present day that they agreed to phrases with Wooden on a one-year deal. He’ll make a wage of $8.5MM with one other $1MM accessible in incentives, per Melissa Lockard of The Athletic.
January 27: Left-hander Alex Wooden and the Oakland Athletics are reportedly in settlement on a contract, per Robert Murray of FanSided. Particulars of the deal, which Murray provides is pending a bodily, will not be but identified.
Wooden, who celebrated his thirty third birthday earlier this month, will stay within the Bay Space for Athletics’ ultimate season in Oakland after spending the previous three seasons as a member of the Giants. A second-round decide by Altanta through the 2012 draft, spent the primary a number of years of his profession as a high quality mid-rotation arm for the Braves and Giants with a 3.29 ERA (117 ERA+) and three.36 FIP throughout 803 1/3 innings of labor from 2013 to 2018. Issues took a flip for the worst for Wooden after he was traded to the Reds as a part of a multi-player blockbuster that additionally despatched Yasiel Puig and Matt Kemp to Cincinnati. The lefty managed simply 16 appearances between the 2019 and 2020 seasons and struggled to a 5.96 ERA and 6.02 FIP throughout the 48 1/3 innings he was in a position to muster throughout that point.
That pair of injury-marred campaigns didn’t cease the Giants from taking an opportunity on Wooden, nevertheless, and so they had been rewarded for that call virtually instantly. The lefty made 26 begins for San Francisco in 2021, pitching to a 3.83 ERA with a 3.48 FIP in 138 2/3 innings of labor because the Giants stormed to a 107-win season and their first division title since 2012. The membership rewarded Wooden with a two-year, $25MM contract that offseason, although his second contract in San Francisco was nowhere close to as profitable as the primary.
Wooden struggled to a 5.10 ERA in 26 begins with the Giants in 2022 regardless of peripheral numbers that indicated a a lot stronger efficiency, together with a career-best 5.4% stroll price paired with stable strikeout and grounder charges. These struggles led the membership to make use of Wooden as a hybrid starter and bulk reliever in 2023. The veteran southpaw recorded greater than 12 outs simply thrice after the month of June final yr however struggled within the swing position with a middling 4.33 ERA to go together with a 4.47 FIP. Not like 2022, Wooden’s peripherals backed up the lackluster ends in 2023 as his stroll price ballooned to 9.8% whereas his strikeout price dipped to only 17.2%.
Regardless of his struggles over the previous two seasons, the addition of Wooden could possibly be a major enhance for an A’s membership that misplaced 112 video games final yr thanks partially to a rotation that completed 2023 with a collective ERA of 5.74, worst amongst main league golf equipment that don’t name Coors Discipline residence. Even Wooden’s diminished manufacturing of a 4.77 ERA and 4.07 FIP over the previous two seasons can be a notable enchancment over that determine, and if he recaptures the mid-rotation type he flashed earlier in his profession Wooden could possibly be a worthwhile piece for the A’s to flip on the deadline as they proceed their rebuild. Within the meantime, Wooden figures to hitch JP Sears and Paul Blackburn within the Oakland rotation with the likes of Luis Medina, Joe Boyle, and Joey Estes among the many potentialities to spherical out the membership’s beginning 5.
The deal for Wooden takes one other starting-caliber arm off of the marketplace for golf equipment seeking pitching assist. Groups seeking beginning choices can nonetheless look to Blake Snell and Jordan Montgomery when it comes to affect choices, however the decrease ranges of free company have begun to dwindle with arms like Michael Lorenzen and Hyun Jin Ryu representing a number of the next-best choices remaining after the top-of-the-market southpaws. As for the A’s, the membership has beforehand indicated they anticipate to extend payroll over their 2023 determine. Pending the phrases of Wooden’s take care of the membership, RosterResource initiatives the membership for a microscopic $41MM payroll as issues stand in 2024, $17MM under the place they stood final yr. That ought to go away room for the membership to focus on additional rotation additions or maybe assist at shortstop within the run-up to Spring Coaching subsequent month, although they continue to be unlikely to buy within the larger tiers of free company.