Former top prospect Brandon Wood has signed a minor league deal with the Padres, reports Corey Brock of MLB.com. The deal does not include an invite to major league spring training, which is just the latest sign of how far he has fallen.
Selected 23rd overall by the Angels in 2003, Wood was once ranked as the No. 3 prospect in the game by Baseball America, but his minor league success never translated against big league pitching. He owns an ugly .186/.225/.289 batting line over 751 plate appearances in the majors.
Wood, who turns 29 in March, last appeared in the big leagues in 2011 as a member of the Pirates. He played exclusively at the Triple-A level last year between the Royals and Orioles, hitting just .226/.262/.329 with four home runs and 30 RBI in 65 games. He’ll function as organizational depth for San Diego.
Fellow second basemen Javier Baez of the Cubs and D.J. LeMahieu of the Rockies got into a disagreement in the top of the third inning of Sunday’s game at Coors Field over sign-stealing.
LeMahieu reached on a fielder’s choice ground out, then advanced to second base on Charlie Blackmon‘s single. While Nolan Arenado and Trevor Story were batting, Baez was concerned that LeMahieu was relaying the Cubs’ signs to his teammates. Baez decided to stand in front of LeMahieu to block any information he might have been giving to Arenado and Story. LeMahieu got irritated and the two jawed at each other for a bit. Umpires Vic Carapazza and Greg Gibson had to intervene to tell Baez to knock it off.
There has always been a back-and-forth with alleged sign-stealing. As long as teams aren’t using technology to steal signs, it’s fair game for players to relay information to their teammates about the opposing team’s signs. Last year, MLB determined the Red Sox went against the rules and used technology — an Apple watch in this case — to steal signs from the Yankees. Other teams in the past have been accused of using binoculars from the bullpen to steal signs. In this particular case with Baez and LeMahieu, there was no foul play going on, just Baez trying to make the Rockies cede what he perceived to be their slight competitive advantage.
The Cubs went on to beat the Rockies 9-7 on Sunday.