Pirates Claim Brandon Wood

The Pirates claimed shortstop ´╗┐Brandon Wood off waivers from the Angels, tweets Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports.  Wood had been designated for assignment by the Halos late Tuesday, and the Pirates were first in line in the waiver order.

Wood

The former top prospect is now 26 years old, and in 494 big league plate appearances with the Angels he hasn't had success.  The Pirates present the perfect opportunity for redemption, as they're one of few teams that can give Wood regular at-bats at shortstop with some leeway for struggling.  The scouting report is three years old, but before the '08 season Baseball America said Wood had unexceptional range but could "handle shortstop just fine" defensively.  Though he's a shortstop by trade, Wood has played third base as well.  MLB.com's Lyle Spencer wrote recently, "It was fascinating to see how different he was when he was in the lineup at shortstop rather than at third."

The claim was a no-brainer for Pittsburgh, a team with few interesting players in the shortstop pipeline.  Ronny Cedeno is currently the starter, though the club sought upgrades all winter.  The Pirates were able to get Wood for nothing, after the Angels seemingly kept the asking price high on him for years.  The Pirates will have to open up a 40-man roster spot to accommodate Wood, and they've said they'll make the corresponding move this afternoon.

Photo courtesy of Icon SMI.


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68 Comments on "Pirates Claim Brandon Wood"


JaySchu
4 years 4 months ago

derp

ARod's Ring
4 years 4 months ago

There was a player named Brandon Wood
Angel fans were hoping he was good

The Angels drafted him in the 1st round
He could play any postion but on the mound

He was better than most short stops
He could really handle those in between hops

The Angels wanted him to play third
But his batting stunk like a t*rd

Hatcher worked with him day in and day out
But he continued to make outs

The Angels wash their hands
Now hes a Pirate farmhand

4 years 4 months ago

too hard

JacksTigers
4 years 4 months ago

Well…. umm…. Good luck with that.

Erik Johnson
4 years 4 months ago

Can’t be any worse than Ronny Cedeno and Josh Rodriguez

JacksTigers
4 years 4 months ago

Never say never….. or in this case, can’t.

baseballfreak25
4 years 4 months ago

With all these surprise teams showing off this year, look out here comes the Pirates!

RATTY1
4 years 4 months ago

He could hit Clean up for the Padres with his Avg. ….Mendoza line Rules in San Diego!

monkeyspanked
4 years 4 months ago

Good luck Woody!

NathanielS
4 years 4 months ago

Halo fans will be rooting for you Brandon, good luck.

JacksTigers
4 years 4 months ago

They will? Because up to this point all I have seen is Halo fans bashing him.

NathanielS
4 years 4 months ago

Some people, sure.

ryankrol
4 years 4 months ago

Its more like 50/50. The way I see it… How is it his fault for the Halos front office hanging on to him for too long? The Angels aren’t a team that has time to wait around for a player to like Wood to find himself, yet they insisted on keeping Wood because he was supposed to be the next big star. Perhaps some egos in upper management needed to be set aside before the right move was finally made?

bjsguess
4 years 4 months ago

I will root for him. Wish him nothing but the best. Hope he fulfills all of his promise.

notsureifsrs
4 years 4 months ago

you have now hit rock bottom, brandon. time to rebound

4 years 4 months ago

The Pirates are rock bottom? Oh, wait. Yeah, I guess you’re right.

Pete
4 years 4 months ago

There aren’t many players with an OPS of 455 after 494 PA’s, he might be the worst hitter of all time. If he has any kind of success in the NL then the “AL is better” argument certainly has a new poster child.

notsureifsrs
4 years 4 months ago

he’s definitely the best worst hitter ever, though

ryankrol
4 years 4 months ago

I heard that both Wood and Jeff Mathis compiled historic lows based on their total PA’s.

4 years 4 months ago

John Vukovich, a utility IF for the Phillies, Brewers, and Reds in the ’70s compiled a .425 career OPS in 607 PA.

Out of all non-pitchers with at least 490 PA since 1950, Wood’s .455 OPS comes in second.

Motor_City_Bombshell
4 years 4 months ago

Yay the Pirates have a real shortstop!!

Everyone else remember Angel’s fans raving last year how this guy could potentially hit 40 bombs for them? He could surely do the same thing in Pittsburgh right?!

…right?

JacksTigers
4 years 4 months ago

Do you remember when Granderson was on the block and the Angels offer was based around Wood? Thank god we got Jackson instead.

Raymond Holguin
4 years 4 months ago

hell i remember when brandon wood was one of the centerpiece chips when the angels were trying to trade with the marlins for Miguel Cabrera and they didnt want to pull the trigger!! DAMNIT!!!

bjsguess
4 years 4 months ago

Austin Jackson is sitting at 157/234/243 so far this year.

Led the league in strikeouts in 2010 and hit a total of 4 bombs. His 2010 campaign was a product of a blistering 396 BAbip. Even with a BAbip over 100 points higher than league average he still only hit 293. His 47 BB’s were just OK.

Honestly, Jackson looks like a 250/300/400 hitter with 25-35 SB’s. Not bad, especially when he is getting paid league minimum, but hardly anything to write home about. You are talking about a guy who is good for maybe a few runs over league average at CF.

To date, Jackson has been better than Wood. No question about it. Going forward, I’m not sure that it’s clear cut. Let’s see what Pittsburgh does for the rest of the year and then re-evaluate the deal.

Lunchbox45
4 years 4 months ago

Your analysis is off..

You can’t base Jacksons BABIP to the league average.. The league doesn’t have his speed. BABIP spikes, dips are only useful when they are compared that particular players regular BABIP.. in order to do that, Austin Jackson is going to have to play a few years at the major league level.

In AAA his BABIP was .384

JacksTigers
4 years 4 months ago

Have you seen him play? He strikes out too much but what he doesn’t do with the bat, he makes up for with the glove. He is a very good hitter none the less. Congrats on not mentioning defense or his .293 average in 2010.

bjsguess
4 years 4 months ago

I have seen him play. Not enough to make any valid observations on his defense though. UZR pegged him at +5 last year – which is solid but not spectacular (Peter Bourjos provided 3 times that much value in about 1/3rd of the playing time).

Also – if you read my post I do mention that he hit 293. That’s great. I’d be thrilled to have a CF’er that played + defense, hit 300, and stole 30+ bases. My point is that Jackson is NOT that player. Unless his contact skills improve dramatically he won’t be a 300 hitter.

And to Lunchbox45 (below) … I’m not suggesting that Jackson should be league average with BABIP. Plus speed mixed with a ground ball hitter will almost always result is a solid BABIP. Just for the record, Jackson had the highest BABIP in ALL OF BASEBALL. Speedsters like Crawford, Ichiro, etc were a good 50 points lower than Jackson in BABIP.

When you normalize his BABIP you end up with a player that is -15 runs below average for a CF’er. I don’t think Jackson is that bad. Like I mentioned above, I see him as a slightly above league average offensive CFer with slightly above league average defense. His peaks will probably be a little better but that’s what Jackson gives you. A fine player, good guy to have (especially when he is cheap). But let’s not kid ourselves into thinking that he is some sort of superstar.

4 years 4 months ago

UZR is wrong then. Jackson is a spectactular centerfielder.

JacksTigers
4 years 4 months ago

Stats don’t always tell the whole story. Jackson was a top 5 defensive outfielder last year. Watching him on the highlight reel does not mean that you watch him. You have absouloutly no stats besides strikeouts to back up anything you have to say. With your argument, I guess Mark Reynolds and Adam Dunn should have never made it past AA.

ryankrol
4 years 4 months ago

Actually Halos fans were already questioning Wood’s ability to produce under that much pressure coming into last season. He was already out of options — and the fan base still remembers that it never took Tim Salmon, Jim Edmonds, Garrett Anderson, Darin Erstad, Troy Glaus, etc. as long as it took Brandon Wood. In the past 20 years, the only Angels player (as far as I can remember) who were brought up to be an everyday player and/or star and failed initially was JT Snow. But even Snow showed signs of being a consistent middle of the order run producer in his first 2 seasons. Todd Greene can be thrown in their as well (even though he was hitting immediately), but a broken wrist might have ruined his swing. Wood was healthy and couldn’t even buy a hit. Like him or not, Angels fans have been anticipating this move for a couple of years.

bjsguess
4 years 4 months ago

I was an optimistic Angels fan.

I thought a 250BA and 20HR’s was entirely possible. Still do. No reasonable fan was expecting 40HR’s from Wood last year.

Good move for the Pirates. Hope Brandon finally gets his shot and does something with it.

ryankrol
4 years 4 months ago

I see this as just a case of one player being able to produce right away (Trumbo), and another (Wood) needing longer to develop, and that it’s just a matter of not having the time to continue waiting since the Halos are a team that is expected to win now.

Raymond Holguin
4 years 4 months ago

im really rooting for this guy. Every at bat i would watch of his cuz i always had that hope that THIS would be the at-bat that something clicks and he takes off with all that “potential”. to say the least i was disappointed everytime usually in the form of a clearly overmatched K. that being said i hope he is able to put it together somewhere!

4 years 4 months ago

The Angels will regret this move. He is only 26 and was a former Top prospect. I seen him play in the minors and he was awesome. I will be rooting for him and I cant wait until he becomes that player everybody tought he would. And no Im not Brandon Wood.

ryankrol
4 years 4 months ago

The Angels are not a team that can afford to continue waiting around for a player like Wood to finally find himself. They need production right now.

4 years 4 months ago

I know the need production now so why is Mathis and Willits still on the team. Their time is up. Plus remember Maicer Izturis is a part time player. He never plays a full season.

Commander_Nate
4 years 4 months ago

Why? They have plenty of middle infield depth and need consistent production since they will likely be in the race all year. It’s not like the Pirates play the Angels real often either.

4 years 4 months ago

And your suggestion to the Angels on who they should have dropped or sent down when Aybar came off the DL is….?

Shu13
4 years 4 months ago

They gave him MORE then enough time to produce and he hasn’t been able to do it…they won’t regret this move at all…had he been able to produce in ’08 they would not have sent him back down they would have made the adjustments to keep him up same goes for ’09 then in ’10 they said this IS your shot and he crumbled…I do believe he would have gotten more ab’s at 1B had Trumbo “pulled a Wood” and not produced but instead he has shown he can handle ML pitching..

formerdraftpick
4 years 4 months ago

I think a bigger trade might be going down for Pittsburgh. They signed a bunch of guys to pitch at their AAA level. Now their pitching staff at AAA looks like a 40 man roster. Something has to give. Then again, wasn’t a trade imminent for Doumit two years ago to this date?

ryankrol
4 years 4 months ago

Yesterday, after seeing Kevin Youkilis foul all those balls off his ankle — and to me he has always looked like he might break down at any time — I had it in the back of my mind that somehow Wood ends up on the Red Sox to back him up, as well as Scutaro at SS, and possibly be their next starting SS after Scutaro moves on. Just a crazy thought.

4 years 4 months ago

The second coming of Steve Jeltz.

goner
4 years 4 months ago

IMO, Wood isn’t even in Jeltz’s galaxy yet:

* Steve Jeltz (2041 career PA) had an OPS+ of 61, with -1.4 career bWAR, while through his age 26 (1st 3 seasons, 315 PA), Jeltz had an OPS+ of 45, with -0.1 bWaR

* To date, Brandon Wood (age 26, career 494 PA) has an OPS+ of 22, with -2.7 bWAR… that’s not a typo. He had an OPS+ of five last year in 243 PA.

If Wood stays in Pittsburgh the whole year and supplants anyone as the starter, we’re going to have fond memories of the days of Sammy Khalifa, U.L. Washington, and Rafael Belliard.

formerdraftpick
4 years 4 months ago

Don’t you mean Sammy Kahlifia?

Smrtbusnisman04
4 years 4 months ago

I’d hate to see Josh Rodriguez leave, but i guess that Wood is worth a shot.

Wait, why is he being called a “shortstop” when he has played a majority of his time at 3B?

bad defense LOSES Ballgames

Commander_Nate
4 years 4 months ago

He is a natural SS who converted to 3B. He is actually a pretty decent fielder at his original position. His problem is offense.

ryankrol
4 years 4 months ago

Before Maicer Izturis and Alberto Callaspo started killing the ball, I was thinking why not just keep Wood and just groom him to be your typical #9 hitting SS (Walt Weiss, Ozzie Guillen), and use Aybar as trade bait later in the season. It would never have happened though. It was based more on making a move at the deadline, especially if Aybar doesn’t adjust at the plate and continues to make stupid mental errors on the base paths…

RSBuletz
4 years 4 months ago

You mean like last night with Aybar in the 8th? Took the Angels right out of the game with that triple try with no outs. Maicer’s baseball smarts are 10x Aybar’s.

Bucs
4 years 4 months ago

What has Rodriguez shown that you that would make you hate losing him? He isn’t an every day player. Not a good rule 5 pick in my book.

4 years 4 months ago

Pirates, you got yourself a really good person. Brandon Wood is honest to goodness one of the friendliest and most humble players in the game. He has massive potential and you’re in need of a SS/3B, so any way you shake it, this is a good move, for both the Pirates and Brandon.

As far as his defense goes at SS, his range is below average, but his glove and arm are both above average and he’s a smart player. I anticipate him being a league average SS, maybe even slightly above average defensively. His only consistent playing time at SS was in the minors as the Angels had Aybar and Izturis, and Wood’s fielding pct was solid every year.

If Pirates are patient, and Clint Hurdle is able to help Wood rediscover his swing and not bog his head down with the garbage Mickey Hatcher preached (by far he worst hitting coach in all of baseball), then I anticipate the Pirates will have themselves a .250/.300 20+ HR hitting SS before long.

It just seems highly unlikely than someone with as much talent as Wood would be THIS bad in the majors. It couldn’t be just him alone, it had to be Hatcher, and the way the Angels benched him for weeks at a time. He may never be A-Rod as many expected, but I think it’s more likely than not he’s Jhonny Peralta + a few more HR.

Todd Smith
4 years 4 months ago

As a Pirate fan, I love this pickup. Just the kind of low risk, high reward kind of gamble the Pirates can afford to take. It cost nothing to get him and he doesn’t block anybody in the system.

eneff
4 years 4 months ago

Yes a perfect marriage… terrible player, terrible team.

Todd Smith
4 years 4 months ago

Somebody needs a nap and bottle.

eneff
4 years 4 months ago

Somebody needs a new team haha

$7562574
4 years 4 months ago

hatcher needs to go.

TheHotCorner
4 years 4 months ago

Hope the Pirates throw him out there at shortstop and let him get 450+ AB’s this year. This way we can finally know what he can do with regular AB’s. Best of luck to the guy.

4 years 4 months ago

If I’m the Pirates, I put Wood in the middle of the line up between Overbay and Alvarez and DON’T TOUCH him. You’re never gonna find out a guy’s potential if you keep moving him around or bench him on and off. Pirates are most likely not going anywhere this season. Keep him in the lineup, see what he’s got. If he’s a bust, he’s a bust and you can move on to something else next year.

bigpat
4 years 4 months ago

I’m sorry but that’s a terrible way to run a team. What has he done to deserve that kind of special treatment? The team doesn’t revolve around Brandon Wood. He’s lucky to have a job in the major leagues, and they should bat him seventh or eighth and see how it plays out from there. He will probably play worse under increased pressure anyways.

rayking
4 years 4 months ago

Phil Nevin and Jack Cust are first round picks who were late bloomers (Nevin was 1st overall). Good move by the Pirates.

kmanst
4 years 4 months ago

he was in the centerpiece of trades for Roy Halladay,Miguel cabrea,Curtis Granderson,and possibly Edwin Jckson all trades were broke up.bad move by the pirates they must have been really desperate.

Steelslayer
4 years 4 months ago

Wasn’t he designated for assignment rather than placed directly on waivers? Giving the Halos 10 days to work out a trade?