Travis Wood, battling for the fifth starter spot in the Cubs rotation, struck out two of the six batters he faced in his first outing on Thursday. An All-Star in 2013, Wood scuffled last season, posting an 8-13 record and 5.03 ERA.
“You always learn more when you fail than when you succeed, and I learned a lot last year about how to go about when you fail, picking yourself back up and getting back after it,” Wood said. “That’s what we took into the offseason.”
He heard that Cubs manager Joe Maddon had named four starters and that Wood was not included in the quartet. The news just motivated Wood even more.
“There is [a purpose] — the purpose is to not have a year like last year,” Wood said. “I know I’m a good pitcher and just have to get back to the basics of attacking the zone and trusting your stuff.”
— Carrie Muskat