One of the most intriguing arms in the Angels system was unfortunately plagued by injury in 2013. Can Austin Wood get his arm healthy and get his career back on track in 2014?
Position: RHP Highest Level: High-A
Bats: R Throws: R Height: 6'4" Weight: 225
Age: 23 Born: 7/11/90
2013 Rank: #16
2013 Season Stats
AZL: 4.1 IP, 0-0, 2.08 ERA, 4 H, 4 BB, 0 HR, 4 SO, 4.12 FIP, .364 BABIP, 81.8 GB%
High-A: 21.2 IP, 0-3, 4.15 ERA, 25 H, 12 BB, 1 HR, 18 SO, 3.80 FIP, .348 BABIP, 45.7 GB%
Fastball = A-
Wood effectively bombards the opposition with a fastball that sits 96-97 and can at times inch closer to triple digits. That’s as a starter. We haven’t seen what he can do as a reliever yet, except for a couple stints in Spring Training in which he was utterly dominant. In fact, Wood was so good in Spring Training last year, Angels management considered making him a reliever and having him skip A+, AA and AAA and join the major league team.
Offspeed Pitches = B+
Wood has major league quality off-speed pitches. He throws a slurve/slider that is a “plus” pitch and is used frequently in two-strike counts. At times he’ll employ a “sinker” type of pitch that really just looks a bit like a two-seamer to me, which sits in the low-90’s. He also throws a changeup with considerable drop that is 15-20 mph softer than his fastball but comes from the same arm angle, which makes it both promising for Wood and deadly for hitters. This pitch has created some comical swing and misses.
Control = D
Wood is the most extreme case of “hit or miss” that I’ve seen in the Angels system. When he’s on, Wood is untouchable, an undisputed top of the rotation superstar pitcher. When he’s off, he might walk 10 batters in 6 innings. This is essentially what hurts his status as a prospect the most. There hasn’t been any trend, so at this point you never actually know what you’re going to get.
Command = D
Again, when he’s on, he puts the ball wherever he wants to and simply cannot be touched. When he’s off, he can’t find the strike zone much less pin-point the ball to any side of the plate.
Mechanics = C
I don’t see anything in his mechanics that suggest he should have lingering arm problems but you never know. He does lose his release point rather frequently. However, I do love that Wood uses he massive frame to create as little stress on his throwing arm as possible and creates a downward angle.