Wood finds a fix that he hopes will pay off big
By Cary Osborne
Every now and again, Alex Wood shows just why the Dodgers traded for him last July. It just seems like those now and agains always seem to happen at Dodger Stadium.
Wood has been magnificent at home in his two starts this season. On Friday, he went seven innings, allowed five hits walked one, allowed one run and struck out nine. It’s the most strikeouts in a game for Wood since September 12, 2014.
But Friday’s start was less about home and more about a quick fix.
“I like throwing here obviously. But tonight was kind of a different story for me. Me and (Dodger pitching coach Rick Honeycutt) found something in my delivery that might be an easy fix to get my timing right,” Wood said. “Hopefully I can continue to build on it.”
Wood said he was watching video of himself earlier this week and noticed his front leg lifting slightly higher when he delivered his pitch. It disrupted his timing. During his bullpen session this week, he worked to fix it.
The result was what we saw on Friday, clearly the most encouraging thing to come out of the Dodgers’ 5-1 loss to the Padres — their fifth straight loss. Another encouraging note is that with the Giants’ 13-1 loss to the New York Mets, the Dodgers are still tied for first place — and hopefully with a new Alex Wood.
In seven starts since the Dodgers acquired him on July 30 last year, he has allowed 11 earned runs in 47 2/3 innings (2.08 ERA) at Dodger Stadium. He has pitched at least six innings in every start.
In eight road starts, he has a 6.75 ERA. He has gone at least six in just two of the starts.
“Consistency’s my biggest thing,” Wood said. “I think the adjustment Honey and I talked about will help my consistency throughout.”
“It was very encouraging for sure,” Wood said of Friday’s start. “It’s kind of a puzzle sometimes when you’re working on stuff. You see things that you think if you change a little bit here you might click. I felt even last week in my start in Colorado I was getting closer. It was just a little bit of a timing issue.”