Perfection doesn't exist.
Alex Wood was handed his first loss of the season by his former team as the Atlanta Braves beat down the Los Angeles Dodgers, 12-3, on Friday night at Dodger Stadium.
Wood was originally drafted by the Braves in the second round of the 2012 MLB Draft, and was traded to the Dodgers at the deadline in 2015 for Hector Olivera.
Entering the game, Wood was a perfect 11-0 with a 1.56 ERA, but the Braves hit him early and often to the tune of a career-high nine runs, increasing his ERA to 2.17 by nights' end.
"I didn't have my command like normal, and I didn't execute," Wood said of his start. "It's just one of those nights. They have a quality lineup and they didn't help me out a whole lot."
Atlanta jumped on Wood with two runs in the first inning to take an early 2-0 lead.
After two scoreless frames from Wood, opposing pitcher Jaime Garcia hit a routine pop fly that Wood dropped, allowing two more runs to score on the costly error.
"Cody [Belinger] lost the ball in the dark sky. I looked at the last second to see if anyone was coming to catch it, and I heard Yaz [Yasmani Grandal] yelling my name," said Wood of the dropped fly ball. "Instinct takes over and I tried to catch it. In retrospect, you probably won't see me attempt to catch a fly ball anymore."
Garcia ultimately was responsible for chasing Wood from the game when he became the first Braves pitcher since Tony Cloninger in 1966 to hit a grand slam.
Jaime Garcia drives a grand slam over the wall in right-center field, extending the Braves' lead to 9-0 in the top of the 5th #PapaSlam!!! pic.twitter.com/xPuawo8tEH— TheRenderMLB (@TheRenderMLB) July 22, 2017
Garcia belted the first grand slam of his career, when he sent a 90MPH fastball from Wood over the fence in right-center to give Atlanta a 9-0 lead.
"That was pretty unbelievable," Garcia said of his grand slam. "I've never hit a grand slam in my life. That was pretty cool."
Wood (11-1), allowed nine runs (seven earned) on a season-high nine hits with four walks and four strikeouts in just 4 and 2/3 innings.
It was Wood's first loss since May 30, 2016 and his first defeat at Dodger Stadium since Sept. 22, 2015.
"They kicked our butts the first two nights," concluded Wood. "Hopefully, Rich [Hill] and Kershaw will get them back the next two days."
Freddie Freeman and Tyler Flowers also homered in the game for Atlanta.
Freddie Freeman drives a home run the other way to left-center field to extend the Braves' lead to 5-0 in the top of the 5th inning!!! pic.twitter.com/blzDegnYZK— TheRenderMLB (@TheRenderMLB) July 22, 2017
Garcia (4-7), picked up the win, allowing three runs on seven hits with one walk and four strikeouts in seven strong innings.
"I was able to make some pitches early on and keep them off balance," said Garcia of his outing. "I knew it was going to be a tough challenge for me, but I was able to execute my pitches and I was able to stay locked in."
The Atlanta left-hander has been mentioned in numerous trade rumors this week, and was expected to miss Friday's start following a trade to the Minnesota Twins.
"I'm not going to lie, and say I didn't hear about it, because a lot of people reached out to me," Garcia said about the trade rumors after the game. "I was aware. I don't pay attention to anything going on that's out of my control. I'm an Atlanta Brave and I'm excited that I'm still here."
Former Dodger Matt Kemp, went 3-for-5 with two runs scored.
The Dodgers managed to scratch across just three runs in the game as they lost back-to-back games for the first time since June 5-6 against the Washington Nationals.
"Woody hasn't had an outing like that all year. It's just one of those nights," said Dodgers' manager Dave Roberts. "We just have to flush this one out and get them tomorrow."
The nine-run deficit was the Dodgers most lopsided loss of the season.
The Braves have won seven of their last nine games on the road.
The Braves send their ace, Julio Teheran to the mound on Saturday opposite Rich Hill as first pitch is scheduled for 6:10PM PST.