Unless the Braves trade for a starter between now and Tuesday, rookie Alex Wood almost certainly will get a chance to make his third major league start that night against Colorado.
The left-hander hopes so because he would like to get another shot after giving up four runs in the third inning and not making it out of the fifth inning of Thursday afternoon’s 7-4 loss.
He didn’t get the loss, but you could sense that it stung plenty, from the look on his face and the tone in his voice during the postgame interview.
“I kind of pride myself on, so far in my career, not giving up the big inning with the crooked number,” said Wood, who was pitching for the University of Georgia just over a year ago.
The crooked number was the four the Mets hung on the 22-year-old left-hander.
Wood gave up consecutive singles to start the second inning, then retired the bottom three in the order on two strikeouts and a ground out. He gave up consecutive singles again to start the third inning and that time paid a heavy price.
One out later, Marlon Byrd singled to left to drive in a run, and left fielder Evan Gattis misplayed the ball, allowing Byrd to advance. After a walk and an RBI ground out, John Buck hit a two-run single that gave the Mets a 4-1 lead.
“I’m used to getting out of those situations, (runners on) second and third,” Wood said. “And to give up that hit to Buck, a big knock for him, probably one of the two pitches I wish I had back. The first-pitch slider to him and the other one to Byrd, the change-up away that he hit to left field. Just one of those days. … They singled me to death.”
Gonzalez said Wood pitched fine for his second major league start and likely would start again Tuesday against Colorado.
“He didn’t get hit that hard,” Gonzalez said. “He gave up some singles to a bunch of right-handed hitters that hit left-handers pretty good. But he did OK. It’s a little different pitching to major league hitters than it is to Triple-A guys.”
Veteran backup catcher Gerald Laird said that despite Thursday’s results, it’s been easy to see why the Braves drafted Wood as high as they did (second round) in 2012.
“Just got into trouble with some bloop hits,” Laird said. “He made pitches, and they just kind of found holes out there. The back-to-back innings where he kind of got in jams, it’s tough getting out of them two times in a row. They had some big hitters come up, and they just had some big hitters find some holes.
“He was just missing a little bit in with the fastballs in to righties. They stacked us pretty right-handed heavy, and to keep guys off that good change-up, you’ve got to be able to throw fastballs inside.”