Wood Signs 1-year Deal to Close for Cubs

Oft-injured hurler inks incentive-laden contract worth $4.2 million
By Doug Sweeney,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 26, 2007 10:47 PM CST
Chicago Cubs pitcher Kerry Wood delivers a pitch against the Houston Astros during the seventh inning of a baseball game in this Aug. 31, 2007 file photo at Wrigley Field in Chicago. Wood, who made the...   (Associated Press)
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(Newser) – Nearly a decade since he burst onto the scene with a 20 strikeout game in just his fifth big league start, Kerry Wood has assumed a new role with the Chicago Cubs. The injury-plagued hurler signed a one-year, $4.2 million deal to be the club’s new closer. Wood said he is excited for the new opportunity, reports the Chicago Tribune.

The right-hander has struggled with elbow and shoulder injuries throughout his career and has not pitched a full season since 2003. Due to his medical history the deal includes major incentives for number of games finished. Wood first threw out of the bullpen in 2005 and, after missing nearly all of the 2006 season, pitched exclusively in relief this past season.