The Giants placed left-hander Alex Wood on the 15-day injured list due to a shoulder impingement, with the placement retroactive to September 1. Outfielder Bryce Johnson was called up from Triple-A to take Wood’s spot on the active roster.
Given the date, it is possible Wood has thrown his last pitch of the 2022 season. Manager Gabe Kapler told reporters (including Alex Pavlovic of NBC Sports Bay Area) that the team will re-evaluate Wood in a week’s time to see if a return is feasible. Since the Giants are all but officially out of the wild card race, the club might decide to shut Wood down for the remainder of the campaign. San Francisco will go with a bullpen game to cover Wood’s next scheduled start, and possibly for the rest of the season if Wood indeed doesn’t return.
As per most of the advanced metrics, Wood’s 2021 and 2022 numbers have been pretty much identical, with the southpaw posting a 3.60 SIERA last season and a 3.45 SIERA this year. However, a few less bounces have gone Wood’s way, as while his real-world ERA was a solid 3.83 in 2021, that number ballooned to 5.10 in 2022. Wood got great results from his sinker in 2021 and his slider was also a plus pitch, but both offerings have been below average this year in Statcast’s view.
Kapler noted that Wood has been trying to pitch through his shoulder problem, which could explain this downturn in production and, in particular, Wood’s recent shaky outings. Over his last three starts and 12 1/3 innings, Wood has been tagged for a 7.91 ERA.
Shoulder and back injuries have hampered Wood in the past, most notably during the 2019-20 seasons when he pitched only 48 1/3 total big league innings. Wood did rebound during the 2020 playoffs to help the Dodgers win the World Series, and he pitched well after signing a one-year, $3MM free agent deal with San Francisco in the 2020-21 offseason. That resulted in a new two-year, $25MM contract to rejoin the Giants last winter.
Carlos Rodon is widely expected to opt out of his contract and re-enter free agency, leaving the Giants with Wood, Logan Webb, Alex Cobb, Jakob Junis, and Anthony DeSclafani under contract or under arbitration control for 2023. DeSclafani is a question mark after missing most of the season due to ankle surgery, but the Giants still have a decent core rotation in place, even if some additions will likely need to be made.