SAN FRANCISCO -- Giants manager Gabe Kapler announced on Monday that Alex Wood tested positive for COVID-19.
“He’s not feeling well at all,” Kapler said. “He’s really broken up. He’s really upset. I think he’s having an awesome season and very disappointed that the season is going to be interrupted for a bit.”
Kapler stated that Wood gave him permission to share the news of his positive test. The skipper additionally said that Wood has not been hospitalized and that his wife, Suzanna, tested negative.
Johnny Cueto was placed on the injured list along with Wood and is dealing with cold and flu-like symptoms, but has not tested positive for COVID-19.
With Wood and Cueto on the injured list, right-hander John Brebbia and infielder Jason Vosler were recalled from Triple-A Sacramento. The Giants will now have to figure out how their rotation shakes out over the next couple days with the starting duo sidelined.
Wood is the second Giant in the past week to contract COVID-19. On Thursday, Kapler revealed after the team’s 3-2 win over the Mets that second baseman Donovan Solano, who is fully vaccinated, tested positive.
In Monday's series opener against the Brewers, José Álvarez was the first leg of a bullpen game, starting in place of Cueto. Álvarez had seven career starts, but he hadn’t opened a game since 2019 and hasn’t pitched more than two innings in an outing this season. Regarding Tuesday's game, Kapler said that the hope is for Cueto to start, but if not, the team will adjust. And when Wood’s spot in the rotation comes up, the team will make a decision based on the bullpen and what options emerge.
“I think it’s a real concern,” Kapler said. “That doesn’t make us unique in any way. We know that a lot of clubs have dealt with the virus and dealt with it successfully. I also am confident that there are other clubs that are dealing with similar circumstances and challenges right now, and we’re going to do our best under the circumstances.
“We’ve done a really good job this season of adapting and adjusting. I don’t see this as anything other than a real challenge that is certainly a concern, but also something that we’re capable of navigating.”
Quintana signed a one-year, $8 million deal with Los Angeles over the offseason, but posted a 6.75 ERA across 53 1/3 innings. The southpaw began the year in the Angels’ starting rotation, but after missing about a month due to shoulder inflammation, he was moved to the bullpen in late-June.
Kapler said that Quintana will likely pitch out of the bullpen, but noted he would be a good candidate to start if needed. From 2013 to 2019, Quintana averaged 32 starts and 193 innings, posting a 3.72 ERA and 3.59 FIP over that span. Rosters expand from 26 to 28 players beginning in September, opening up an opportunity for Quintana to join the team.
Quintana did fare slightly better as a reliever, posting a 3.93 ERA and 3.55 FIP across 18 1/3 innings. He also dramatically cut his walks down from 6.7 per nine as a starter to 1.5 as a reliever. Of his 14 relief appearances, five went multiple innings.
While Quintana struggled with run prevention, the Giants could benefit from his presence in the bullpen, specifically for lefty-on-lefty matchups. This season, left-handed hitters are slashing .180/.286/.262. Of the nine home runs Quintana has allowed this season, only one was hit by a left-hander.
"You go back far enough and you’ve got one of the better pitchers in baseball,” Kapler said.