Friday, December 17, 2010

Kerry Wood proves you can go home again

Kerry Wood just proved you can go home again.

For the second time this week, a baseball player took a lot less money than he could have made elsewhere to sign with the team he actually wanted to play for. Wood rejoined the Chicago Cubs for one year at about $1.5 million. He spurned offers reportedly in the eight-figure range to go back to the team where he became a star only to have injuries wreck his promising career. I would say this looks like the start of a hopeful trend, except Jayson Werth did leave the perennially contending Philadelphia Phillies for the bags stuffed with cash being offered by the bottom-dwelling Washington Nationals.

The New York Yankees didn't want to overpay for another reliever, but Wood probably could have gotten at least twice what he signed for with the Cubs from the Bronx Bombers after his strong second half. Wood solidified what had been a very shaky bridge to Mariano Rivera and the Yankees, especially Joe Girardi, would have loved having him back. Now they have to go out and try to get another veteran guy to round out their bullpen.

Even though it seemed like a long shot, I was hoping the Yankees still had a chance at getting Wood back. Re-signing him would have eased concerns about the bullpen and allowed Brian Cashman to focus all of his attention and resources on other areas, namely his starting rotation. Now, the bullpen is just one more thing he has to worry about.

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