The Cubs agreed to sign Kerry Wood to a one-year deal, the team announced. The contract will pay Wood $1.5MM, according to Gordon Wittenmyer of the Chicago Sun-Times. The reliever also considered a one-year $3.5MM offer from the White Sox, according to Wittenmyer. David Kaplan of Chicago Now first reported that the sides were close to an agreement. SFX represents Wood.
It appeared earlier in the week that Wood was looking for a two-year, $12MM deal. That's a lot of money, but not an unreasonable asking price in this market. Ten relievers have agreed to multiyear deals this offseason and Mariano Rivera is the only one of them who will definitely be a closer next year. Despite the strong market for middle relievers, Wood clearly wanted to return to the organization he was with from 1995-2008.
And that organization has lots of reasons to want Wood back. After the Indians traded him to New York, he posted a 0.69 ERA with 10.7 K/9 and 6.2 BB/9 in 26 innings. Like Chicago closer Carlos Marmol, Wood walks and strikes out lots of hitters. Wood's walks remain an issue and he did struggle early in 2010, but for $1.5MM, he appears to be a bargain.