What do we think of Kerry Wood?
The Chicago Tribune suggests that he could be brought (bought) out of Wrigley:
Wood's fastball was clocked as high as 98 m.p.h. toward the end of the season, and he was unscored on in 18 of 22 appearances. Now, with 4 1/2 more months of rest for his rehabbed shoulder, Wood's arm strength might give him the option of starting or relieving in '08.
Name recognition alone could make Wood a hot commodity, and with old friend Joe Girardi now managing the New York Yankees, the chances of Wood wearing dark blue pinstripes are probably decent if he bolts the Cubs.
There are a few things that interest me about Wood:
- He could start or relieve. If Pettitte doesn't come back he's in the mix as a starter. If Pettitte returns Wood could fill the 8th inning.
- His presence in the pen would push Farns, Edwar, Viz (if he comes back) up. He'd take pressure off rookies like Sanchez or Melancon, and he'd save us (for a couple days) from calls for Joba to pitch the 8th. While Wood never pitched back to back days in 2007, he pitched both ends of a double header on September 15th. His 8.88 K/9 and 6.67 H/9 would look mighty good coming out of the pen (his 4.81 BB/9, not so much).
- He would only cost money, and he'd come cheaper than another Texan I could name.