Randy Wolf, whose first go-round with the Los Angeles Dodgers ended after 18 starts and shoulder surgery in 2007, on Friday agreed in principle on a one-year, $5 million contract to return to the club. The deal includes performance bonuses that could earn Wolf up to $8 million if he pitches 200 innings.
Raised about a half-hour from Dodger Stadium, Wolf, 32, won 12 games for the Houston Astros and San Diego Padres last season. It appeared he would return to Houston this winter after winning six of eight decisions in August and September, after which the Astros briefly offered him three years and $28.5 million to stay on.
According to sources, Wolf's agent, Arn Tellem, made a counter proposal, the original offer was withdrawn and Astros general manager Ed Wade signed Mike Hampton (for $2 million guaranteed) instead.
That was the end of Wolf in Houston and the only offer of its kind Wolf would receive, leading him back to the Dodgers, who've made a habit of acquiring the left-hander on the rebound. Two years ago, Wolf rejected a handful of three-year deals to return to his hometown, in part to be nearer his mother, Judy, who still lives in the area.
He had shoulder surgery at the end of 2007 but made 33 starts last season. He did not pitch well in 21 starts with the Padres, but helped lead a mini, mid-season revival in Houston. The Astros won 10 of his 12 starts down the stretch.