Who am I?
I'm Trace Wood.
Unlike most baseball writers, I haven't always been passionate about baseball. But my interest has grown to borderline obsessive at times over the last 20 years. I watch about 100 games a year, either in person or on the tube, plus 20-30 more I re-watch from videotape for the scouting work I do for STATS, Inc. I read a half dozen periodicals and almost a dozen books about baseball a year, mostly statistical abstracts and/or history. I'm a member of the Society for American Baseball Research Scouting Commmittee and a member of the Bob David's Chapter of SABR, the very first from which the SABR organization sprang more than 30 years ago. That said, my thirst for understanding is still strong because there's so much more to learn about the game. I doubt I'll ever feel comfortable with anyone calling me an "expert".I've been writing professionally since 1996. My first significant baseball publication was a letter to the editor in Baseball America (the September 5, 1999 issue, if you must know). Since then, I've written for several notable publications. I wrote the San Diego Padre player evaluations - both major and minor league - for the 2002 STATS Inc. Scouting Notebook, and both the Padre and Montreal Expo/Washington National player evaluations for that book since 2003, including the minor leaguers. I've also contributed to the last four Bill James Handbooks.
For the 2004 pre-season edition of the Fantasy Baseball Index, I contributed the American League player projections and player profiles. In 2005, I contributed an article on winning 5x5 strategy to the Fantasy Baseball Guide - Professional Edition. I wrote 225 player profiles for the 2006 edition of that same magazine, as well as a little more than a dozen picks and pans for the 2006 season. My articles, columns and fantasy advice have appeared on numerous websites including CREATiVESPORTS, Mastersball.com, MLB.com and the Talented Mr. Roto. From 2001-2005, I did the play-by-play scoring in the press box for MLB.com in Baltimore for most of the Orioles games. In 2005, I did the same thing for the majority of the Washington Nationals' games as well. I was good enough at it that I recieved an offer to become an official scorer. Along the way, I've interviewed dozens of players, coaches, scouts and managers, each of whom have added immensely to my understanding of the game.
Before taking the leap into writing full-time, I was a researcher/library assistant at the Washington DC office of the same law firm that represented Curt Flood in his bid for free agency. Through my work there, I gained a working knowledge of the legal history of baseball.I've been playing sport simulation and fantasy leagues since 1989. I've had the good fortune to participate in ten expert leagues since 2001 and I've finished in the top 4 six times, winning the championship in three.
I tried out for "Jeopardy" once, but fell one correct answer short of qualifying. Several people have told me that if they were ever on "Who Wants to Be a Millionaire", they would have used their lifeline to call me. If I had ever gotten on the show, I probably would have called Alex Trebek.