Travis Wood wanted to start, and the Kansas City Royals had a need. A former full-time starter who has spent much of the last two seasons in the Cubs bullpen, Wood is coming off a season in which he made no starts for the first time in his career. Jerry Crasnick was the first to report Kansas City as the destination. But signing Wood gives them some flexibility; his bullpen history means he could provide important relief innings.
Just a week ago, Royals general manager Dayton Moore sat deep within Kauffman Stadium and admitted that he was probably finished building his starting rotation ahead of spring training. Wood has been searching for a starting job this winter after posting an impressive 2.95 ERA in 61 innings of relief last season for the Cubs. He will work out of the Royals' bullpen if he does not crack the rotation, and is the third ex-Cub (joining Hammel and Jorge Soler) to join the Royals this winter.
Wood gets $4 million this year and $6.5 million in 2018, and the agreement includes and $8.5 mutual option for 2019 with a $1.5 million buyout.
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Wood, who just turned 30 this month, has spent the last five seasons with the Cubs after spending his first two Major League Baseball seasons with the Cincinnati Reds.
Woods is 35-50 with a 4.19 as a starter in his career.