The trade that sent Hector Olivera has been dissected many times on Talking Chop and elsewhere. No one really expected the trade at the time, and there are more questions than answers for just about every player involved.
The price for Olivera seemed steep at the time and still does today. Earlier today, Buster Olney tweeted this interesting nugget about Alex Wood, who, along with Jose Pereza, was the main piece sent to L.A. for the Cuban defector.
Some scouts believe Alex Wood best as reliever, based on his delivery, diminished velo + his excellence vs. lefties: https://t.co/4KF3d6Lqva— Buster Olney (@Buster_ESPN) January 1, 2016
Scouts have questioned Wood's delivery since his college days, though it's yet to stop him from being really good. If his velocity continues to drop as it has the last two years, a move to the bullpen could be coming. That would, of course, really limit what kind of long-term upside he may have.
Wood debuted in 2013 and split time as a starter and reliever, appearing in 31 games with 11 starts. Over 78 innings his fastball had an average velocity of 91.7 mph.
Wood made 24 starts in 2014 (35 appearances altogether) and saw his average fastball velocity dip to 89.8 mph.
Last season, Wood's fastball dropped to 89.1 mph.
He's dominated left-handed hitters to the tune of a 2.28 FIP over his career compared to 3.71 FIP against righties. That mark against right-handed hitters doesn't scream banish him to the bullpen, but it's not great.
And while some have questions about Wood, others have soured on Peraza, calling him more of a utility guy than middle infield starter. He was dragged through the mud a bit when he was the main piece the Reds received for Todd Frazier.
Olivera's stock has dipped, too. He seems likely to play left field instead of third base and didn't impress in Winter Ball before getting kicked off his team. His first six months with the Braves went about as badly as possible.
There's a growing possibility neither side gets a whole lot out of the mega deal. It's still too early to judge it one way or another, but if Wood is destined to be a reliever, Peraza becomes a utility infielder, and Olivera isn't anything special, all the uproar surrounding the deal could be for naught.