Brandon Wood Designated for Assignment by Angels

Wood has been designated for assignment by the Angels. Will the Pirates claim him?

If there’s one thing I’ve seen about a thousand times over the past year, it has been this:

“The Pirates should trade for Brandon Wood.”

The idea usually gets brought up when talking about how the Los Angeles Angels aren’t using the former top prospect, and only increased this off-season with Wood out of options.  Yesterday, the Angels designated Wood for assignment, which gives them ten days to trade, waive, or release him.  If he’s placed on waivers, the Pittsburgh Pirates will have priority, since they own the first overall waiver pick until April 30th.

There is some appeal with Wood.  He was the number 16 prospect in baseball prior to the 2008 season, falling from number eight in 2007, and number three in 2006.  In his limited time in the majors he’s displayed some good defense at third, and while he has the ability to play shortstop, his defensive numbers there haven’t been good, with a career -26.0 UZR/150, which is based on a small sample size.

The call for Brandon Wood is mostly out of desperation over the shortstop position.  So far, Wood has played at a pace that would make him a downgrade over Ronny Cedeno.  In 494 plate appearances, he has a .168/.197/.259 line with 11 homers.  Cedeno isn’t hitting much better so far this season, but he does have a career .243/.282/.352 line, and while he hasn’t been strong defensively, he does have a -4.1 UZR/150 in his career.

There is an argument to be made for claiming Wood.  He’s 26 years old, and has never really had regular playing time, so it would be interesting to see what he could do.  He would basically take the place of Josh Rodriguez on the 25-man roster, and would be in a similar circumstance, since he is out of options, and would have to be on the roster all season.

As a bench player, I wouldn’t mind seeing what Wood could do.  Maybe a change in scenery could do him well.  However, I wouldn’t throw him in to the starting role at shortstop.  Aside from his poor batting line, he’s been completely overmatched at the plate, striking out 33% of the time in his career, and walking 2.6% of the time.  I wouldn’t mind seeing the Pirates claim him, but unless the “change in scenery” idea proves to work, I don’t think he should be starting anywhere on the field.

As for whether the Pirates will take a chance on him, I’d be very surprised if they pass on him.  They’ve taken chances on every former top prospect that has fallen in their lap.  Those deals came through trades (Lastings Milledge), free agency (Andy Marte), or waiver claims (Sean Gallagher).  The results haven’t worked out, but claiming Wood is free, and taking a free shot at a guy who used to be considered one of the best young players in baseball is something the Pirates should always consider.

UPDATE 12:38 AM: Bob Nightengale provides this update via Twitter:

There is zero chance of Brandon Wood clearing waivers. The Pirates and others are all over him.

I guess the question would then be, will Brandon Wood even make it to waivers?  If he does, it looks like he will be a Pirate.

Share This Article

Tim Williams

Tim is the owner and editor in chief of Pirates Prospects. He started the site in January 2009, and turned it into his full time job during the 2011 season. Prior to starting Pirates Prospects, Tim worked with AccuScore.com, providing MLB, NHL, and NFL coverage to various national media outlets, including ESPN Insider, USA Today, Yahoo Sports, and the Wall Street Journal. He also writes the annual Prospect Guide, which is sold through the site. Tim lives in Bradenton, where he provides live coverage all year of Spring Training, mini camp, instructs, the Bradenton Marauders, and the GCL Pirates.

Thompson Is POW; Ngoepe Homers In Wild Power Game

Next Story »

Is Jeff Locke Ready for AAA?

  • Anonymous

    On another topic and I hate to say this but is it wrong to root for Matt Purke be hurt more than he might be so he slips in the draft far enough for the Bucs to nab him.
    As for would I would want them to at least attempt to trade for J Rods rule 5 rights first but I can handle Wood replacing him regardless if he can play SS at all

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_OGCKUSO5MA5VUCJHW2YSJ2K3TM Bob

    I don’t like the move if they pick him up, I would rather see JRod get the regular playing time first.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_OGCKUSO5MA5VUCJHW2YSJ2K3TM Bob

    I don’t like the move if they pick him up, I would rather see JRod get the regular playing time first.

  • Todd Smith

    I’m all over Brandon Wood – I really do think it’s a must for the Pirates to find a way to get him. He has about the same number of plate appearances as Pedro Alvarez so far, and I think that’s far too early to call either player a bust. I think it makes tons of sense to bring him in to replace Josh Rodriguez at the very least. I don’t think he should immediately be brought in to replace Cedeno as the starter, but I think he should absolutely be given every possible chance to earn it.

Latest Analysis

  • Jose Tabata

    The Details of Jose Tabata’s New Swing

    12 hours ago

    On Friday I wrote about how Jose Tabata talked to Marlon Byrd over the off-season, aimed at changing his swing to add some leverage, lift the ball, ...

    Read More
  • (Photo Credit: David Hague)

    What Led to Keon Broxton’s Breakout Year in Altoona?

    2 days ago

    Keon Broxton used to be one of the top prospects in the Arizona Diamondbacks’ farm system. Baseball America ranked him as high as tenth in the system ...

    Read More
  • Adrian Sampson

    Don’t Forget About This Pitcher When Creating Your Pirates Dream Rotation

    2 days ago

    If you’re setting up a dream rotation for the Pittsburgh Pirates in the not-too-distant future, then you’re going to be throwing out names like Tyler Glasnow, Gerrit ...

    Read More
  • (Photo Credit: David Hague)

    Jose Tabata Changed His Swing After Talking With Marlon Byrd

    3 days ago

    Yesterday, Jose Tabata put one on the roof of the batting cages over the left-field fence at Pirate City. Today, he added two more. By that pattern, ...

    Read More
  • Antonio Bastardo

    How Ray Searage is Trying to Fix Antonio Bastardo’s Control Issues

    3 days ago

    Tony Watson has established himself as one of the best left-handed relievers in the game. Out of 142 qualified relievers last year, he ranked 21st in WAR, ...

    Read More
  • (Photo Credit: David Hague)

    Q&A: Will PNC Park Burn Down When Neil Walker Eventually Leaves?

    4 days ago

    Last week we started a Q&A article that will run every Friday. Right after the first article went up, we got a lot more questions. Normally I’ll ...

    Read More
  • Browse More Articles

    More

    Advertisement