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Red Sox Hot Stove Targets: Alex Wood an under the radar option for the rotation?

Couch Guy Sports will go through the many questions facing the Red Sox in a series of Hot Stove Targets articles looking at the many players who could be with the club next season.

The Red Sox rotation could see some changes in 2022. Eduardo Rodriguez is a free agent and if he is not offered a qualifying offer or an extension he’ll need to be replaced. Chaim Bloom could go with an under-the-radar replacement through free agency and sign Giants lefty Alex Wood.

Alex Wood had a rebound season with the Giants

Wood enters free agency coming off a healthy season with San Francisco last year. The 30-year-old lefty made 26 starts with the Giants last season. He posted a 10-4 record with a 3.83 ERA, 1.183 WHIP over 138 2/3 innings.

Wood has struggled with injuries over the course of his career. He dealt with back problems at the beginning over 2021, but rebounded nicely. After coming off the injured list, Wood had a sub-2.00 ERA through his first six starts with San Francisco. There were ups and downs following those starts but overall he had a good season.

The veteran lefty has made 30+ starts just once in nine MLB seasons. The only time he achieved that feat was in 2015, when he split time between the Braves and Dodgers.

Alex Wood a viable fit in Boston?

The Red Sox will be looking for someone for the middle of their rotation if Rodriguez leaves. Wood could be a bridge option for the Sox rotation and come at a cheaper cost than Rodriguez.

Wood turns 31 in January, it’s unlikely that he would command a long deal. Bloom who primarily signed free agents last season to either one-year deals with an option. Wood could receive a Garrett Richards type contract.

There’s options within the system between Connor Seabold, Garrett Whitlock, Richards, and Tanner Houck.

Despite the internal options, baseball has been proving the way pitchers are being used is changing. Bloom will need more arms to chose from in order for manager Alex Cora to properly get through a full season.

Wood pitched brilliantly for the Giants this postseason. Including a 1-0 win over the Dodgers where he out dueled Max Scherzer. Wood only made one appearance during the postseason for the Giants.

Health will be a concern, but Wood is talented. He rebounded nicely in 2021, but is the one relatively healthy season enough to bring in Wood and on a lucrative contract?

A two-year, $25 million pact could be enough, but expect the Giants to remain his No. 1 option.

Conclusion

The Giants are really high on Wood and president of baseball operations Farhan Zaidi could extend him or offer a QO to the impending free agent.

Zaidi has been with Wood when working the Dodgers and now in San Francisco. After landing Wood on a one-year, $1 million deal, the lefty stepped up for the 107 win Giants.

Red Sox fans will be looking at the big name free agents for the rotation. Bloom has not operated with that mentality and focus during his first two seasons. Bloom will continue to look for under the radar value, Wood presents that but health will be a concern. The Giants will likely be the No. 1 option for Wood. Bloom shouldn’t spend a ton on Wood, but should consider due to his versatility as a pitcher.

– Chris Henrique (@ChrisHenrique on Twitter)

Feature image courtesy of The Mercury News

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