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When is Alex Wood Coming Back? Fantasy Baseball Injury Return Update

Alex Wood - fantasy baseball rankings pitchers draft sleepers MLB injury news

Largely a reliable starter throughout his big league career, Oakland A's left-hander Alex Wood was off to a tough start to this 2024 campaign before left rotator cuff tendinitis sent him to the 15-day injured list.

Perhaps the ailment and subsequent opportunity for a reset is a blessing in disguise as Wood scuffled to a 5.26 ERA across nine starts and 39 1/3 innings on the season, once again showing a decrease in strikeout rate and an uncharacteristic increase in walk rate.

Wood's quality K-BB% figures and solid run-prevention figures have kept him on the fantasy radar in deeper leagues throughout his career but this year has been a different story. Let's check in on Wood's current injury status and what fantasy managers could expect from the veteran upon his return to action.

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Alex Wood Injury Update for Fantasy Baseball

Wood left a May 12 start against the Seattle Mariners after just two innings with a shoulder issue and was placed on the 15-day IL on May 15. Wood yielded five runs (only one earned) on four hits, including a homer and a walk while striking out one in that outing.

Unfortunately, this doesn't appear to be anything close to a minimum-stay situation as Wood has been shut down from throwing entirely for 10-14 days before being reevaluated. This almost certainly means Wood will need additional time on the injured list before starting a throwing program, followed by a rehab assignment.

This certainly doesn't have the feel of a short-term absence. While he has pitched his way off the fantasy radar for now, prospective managers should brace for a lengthy IL stint for the veteran southpaw.


Alex Wood Fantasy Baseball Outlook

While Wood's 5.26 ERA and 4.79 SIERA are no good, it's his lack of control that has been most surprising.

The owner of a steady 7.1% BB% for his career, the 33-year-old has issued free passes at a 10.2% clip in 2024. In fact, Wood saw a rise in walks last season as well, with a 9.8% BB% clip. Add in decreased strikeout rates over the last season and change and Wood's current 7.5% K-BB% this season is identical to his figure from 2023. It's a far cry from the healthy 18.2% K-BB% he turned in during the 2022 season. Additionally, his ground-ball rate sits at a career-low 36.8% clip.

It's safe to say at this point that fantasy managers can cut bait if they haven't already. A subpar start compounded by what appears to be a notable shoulder issue is not a recipe for fantasy impact. Leave Wood on the wire for now and keep an eye on his status as he rehabs from a left shoulder ailment.

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