Mets Escape With 2-1 Victory Over Braves After Exciting Ninth Inning

The New York Mets five-game series against the Atlanta Braves have been a dog fight from the beginning, and it proved again in game four. The Mets 2-1 win was symbolic of their 2021 surprising success. It featured unlikely heroes, bullpen success, and tremendous defense to get a much-needed victory.

After a tense 1-1 battle that carried into the seventh inning, manager Luis Rojas turned to the bat of Brandon Drury. He was fresh off a 3-for-3 night in Tuesday’s blowout loss and was 6-for-14 as a pinch hitter. Drury waited back on a Max Fried curveball and launched it deep into the left-field bleachers for a 2-1 Mets lead.

Battle Tested

The usually reliable Aaron Loup got the ball to protect the lead in the eighth but ran into instant trouble. After two straight singles to leadoff inning, a swinging bunt from Freddie Freeman set the Braves up with runners on second and third with only one out. Jeurys Familia came into face the red-hot Austin Riley, who homered earlier in the game. Familia struck out Riley, then induced a Dansby Swanson groundout to escape the jam.

Trouble returned in the ninth inning for Edwin Diaz, who allowed a leadoff double to Abraham Almonte. After getting a flyout, Ehire Adrianza singled to right field, and a perfect throw from Michael Conforto and a great tag from James McCann nabbed Almonte from scoring the tying run. Pablo Sandoval flew out to Kevin Pillar, cutting towards the left-center field gap to secure the win.

Tylor Megill was solid once again in 5.1 innings, allowing just one run while striking out six to lower his ERA to a very impressive 2.04. The combination of five relievers the Mets used allowed just four hits, no walks, and kept the Braves scoreless. The win pushed the Mets four games ahead of the second-place Philadelphia Phillies and five ahead of the Braves.

On Thursday, both teams finish up their series with a 12:10 afternoon game. Drew Smyly faces Taijuan Walker in the rubber game of the five-game series from Citi Field.

Mets Game(s) Preview (7/26/21) vs. Atlanta Braves (48-50)

The New York Mets and Atlanta Braves begin a critical five-game series with a doubleheader starting today. As the trade deadline approaches, this series could clarify the type of moves each team needs to make this week. The first pitch of the seven-inning twi-night doubleheader is scheduled for 5:10 p.m. ET.

The Mets took two out of three from the Toronto Blue Jays over the weekend and kept a four-game lead in the NL East. Pete Alonso led the way in the series with three home runs and is in the middle of a nine-game hitting streak. During the hot streak, Alonso is slashing .368/.442/.789 with five home runs and ten runs batted in. Jeff McNeil should see his way back into the lineup for the doubleheader after pinch-hitting in Sunday’s win. McNeil delivered a two-run double, which gave the Mets the lead in the sixth inning.

The Braves come off a series split with the Philadelphia Phillies and sit four games behind the Mets. After Ronald Acuna Jr.’s season-ending injury, the Braves have not rebounded to charge up the standings. With the San Diego Padres and Los Angeles Dodgers destined to play in the wild card game, the Braves’ only hope is to win the division. Should they lose the series to the Mets, they may become sellers.

Pitching Matchups

Game 1

Marcus Stroman takes the mound for the Mets and was stellar in his last outing. He threw eight shutout innings, allowing just one hit, and struck out seven against the Cincinnati Reds. The Mets will need Stroman to go deep in the game once again with the uncertainty of their starting rotation for the rest of the week. Stroman’s 2.59 ERA is the 10th best in all of baseball.

Kyle Muller starts for the Braves and has managed to survive in the Braves rotation. He has only gone deeper than five innings in one of his outings but has only allowed more than two runs once. In his start against the Mets earlier this season, Muller pitched four no-hit innings, allowing one run on two walks.

Game 2 

The Mets will likely use a bullpen game in game two as they have no options for a regular starter.

Bryse Wilson gets the start for the Braves in game two and is making his first start in the big leagues since June 20. In two doubleheader starts this season, Wilson has pitched four innings in each start and combined to allow eight runs. Wilson typically throws plenty of strikes, but this has resulted in seven home runs allowed in just 28.2 innings pitched.

Matchup To Lookout For

Marcus Stroman vs. Ozzie Albies: 4-for-10 (.400), Strikeout

Smith’s Multi Homer Game Isn’t Enough in Mets 4-3 Walk-off Loss

The series finale between the New York Mets and Atlanta Braves had an exciting start and finish. Atlanta found a way to get to Jacob deGrom in the first inning, and Freddie Freeman found a way to spoil the Mets’ ninth-inning comeback with a walk-off single. The gutsy ninth inning gave the Braves a 4-3 win and a much-needed series win.

The Braves never hit the ball out of the infield off Seth Lugo, but it was enough to scratch out a run. Guillermo Heredia ended up at second after a Lugo throwing error started the inning. Lugo tried to make a hero play as he fell to the ground to field a swinging bunt and flung it into the camera well. Pablo Sandoval moved him over with a ground out, an intentional walk to Ronald Acuna Jr., and Ender Inciarte’s walk after being down 0-2 set the table for Freeman.

He had struck out in every at-bat in the game and made sure it did not happen again. Freeman banked a first-pitch curve off Lugo’s ankle and beat Luis Guillorme‘s throw to first to get the win. Guillorme might have had a play at third base for a force but assumed Acuna Jr. would hustle on the biggest play of the game.

Getting Started Early

It is rare for a starting pitcher to strike out 14 batters and have his worst start of the season. deGrom showed us how it is possible in his dominant outing. The Braves did all of their scoring in the first inning, and it was plenty to survive against the worst scoring offense in baseball.

deGrom had gone 34 consecutive starts without allowing a run in the first inning, but the Braves had other plans. Ehire Adrianza led off with a triple, and NL RBI leader Ozzie Albies drove him in with a single. Austin Riley followed with a two-run home run which was the first first-inning home run against deGrom in almost two years. After the rough first inning, he settled in for another dominant start.

deGrom pitched seven innings, allowing three runs, striking out 14, and retiring 18 straight batters at one point. He also flirted with history again by striking out eight straight Braves. Due to his usual dominance, this was deGrom’s worst of the season but was plenty good enough to deserve a victory.

Matching Zeros

Ian Anderson was the anti-deGrom, needing just two strikeouts in his seven innings of work, and held the Mets to two runs. Pete Alonso gave the Mets an early lead with an RBI single, then Dominic Smith did the rest of the work with two home runs. His second came off Will Smith in the ninth inning to tie the game. James McCann had two hits on the night, but as usual, the Mets offense took a night off.

Luckily the loss does not hurt the Mets division lead with the Washington Nationals losing. On Friday, they begin the Subway Series in the Bronx with the New York Yankees. Taijuan Walker will start against Jordan Montgomery for the 7:05 start from Yankee Stadium.

Braves Score 20 and Mets Peterson Leaves With an Injury in Ugly Loss

New York Mets, David Peterson

The Atlanta Braves took it to New York Mets pitching in a dominating 20-2 victory where they clubbed 20 hits as well. The big story for the Mets is David Peterson leaving the game with an injury to his side and ending his solid start streak.

Peterson lasted just three innings and struggled from his first pitch. He allowed eight hits, six runs (five earned) and could not avoid hard contact. Sean Reid-Foley provided no help by recording just one out while allowing five runs (four earned). Thomas Szapucki followed and made his MLB debut and gave the Mets 3.2 innings but allowed six runs, including two homers. Albert Almora Jr. allowed the Braves to get to 20 by allowing three runs in the one inning he threw.

Stop The Count

Every position player in the Braves starting lineup recorded at least one hit, and six Braves had multi-hit games. Ozzie Albies led the way with a five-hit, two-home run, seven RBI game. Austin Riley supported with three singles and the same amount of RBIs. Anything with the Braves starts with Ronald Acuna Jr., and he struck for another leadoff home run which opened the floodgates.

Surprisingly, the Mets led 2-0 after Pete Alonso’s two-run home run in the first inning. After the shaky start, Braves starter Max Fried settled in to throw five solid innings. Fried held the Mets to one hit in the other four innings he threw in his first start off the IL.

To put tonight in perspective, Jacob deGrom has allowed nine runs this entire season. He will get the ball and attempt to slow down the red-hot Braves offense against Ian Anderson. The final game is scheduled for another 7:20 p.m. ET start.

Mets Game Preview: (6/30/21) @ Atlanta Braves (37-41)

The New York Mets and Atlanta Braves play the second game of their series after a terrific first game of their series. It looked like the Mets offense would disappoint once again, but a 4-run seventh gave them enough to win 4-3. The second game is scheduled for a usual 7:20 p.m. ET start from Truist Park.

Kevin Pillar gets the opportunity to bat leadoff with Jeff McNeil getting a night off. It is Pillar’s first time batting leadoff since the beginning of the month and is 1-for-18 as the number one-hitter this season. He is in the middle of a small hot streak with two home runs in his last four games. Surprisingly, Pillar is hitting just .190 against left-handed pitching after crushing them over the two prior seasons.

To beat the Atlanta Braves, pitching has to contain Ronald Acuna Jr. and Freddie Freeman. They have done a great job against both, holding Acuna to a .167 average and Freeman to a .393 slugging percentage. Freeman did record five hits against the Mets earlier this season but only has one extra-base hit against them.

Pitching Matchup

David Peterson looks to continue his mini hot streak as he takes the mound for the Mets. In his last three starts, he has thrown 16.2 innings, holding opponents to two runs and a .115 batting average. With a very packed schedule coming up as the All-Star break approaches, they will need Peterson to continue pitching successfully.

Max Fried makes his first start off the IL after dealing with a blister on his index finger. Fried was in a terrific groove after lackluster April in which he had an ERA over ten. In the last two months, Fried has a 2.51 ERA and has allowed just three home runs. He pitched six innings in his start against the Mets in May, allowing one run and striking out eight.

Matchups To Lookout For

David Peterson vs. Austin Riley: 3-for-6 (.500), 3 Doubles, 3 Strikeouts

Max Fried vs. Pete Alonso: 2-for-15 (.133), Home Run, 3 Walks, 6 Strikeouts

Max Fried vs. Michael Conforto: 2-for-17 (.118), Double, 3 Walks, 8 Strikeouts

Mets Game Preview: (6/23/21) vs. Atlanta Braves (35-37)

The New York Mets and Atlanta Braves play the final game of their four-game series as the Mets search for a split. Braves pitching has done a terrific job of shutting down the Mets’ offense, throwing 17 consecutive scoreless innings. The final matchup of the series is scheduled for 7:10 p.m. ET from Citi Field.

In last night’s game, the injury bug struck Marcus Stroman, which forced him to leave with a left hip issue. Luckily, Stroman’s MRI came back clean, and he should avoid the injured list. As of 5:15 p.m., they have not released their lineup, but they expect Michael Conforto to rejoin them tonight. Conforto has been on the sidelines since May 16 and is a massive boost to the struggling Mets offense.

The Braves offense has not been anything special series, but they have played just like the Mets all year. They found ways to score just enough to win, and it earned them two victories. Will Smith and A.J. Minter both pitched in back-to-back days and are unlikely to take the mound today. Chris Martin or Tyler Matzek are likely to take over the late innings if the Braves have a lead tonight.

Pitching Matchups

Tylor Megill is making his MLB debut a lot sooner than the Mets had hoped. Multiple injuries to their starting rotation have forced the Mets to test the depth of their minor league system. Megill is the 21st ranked prospect in the Mets farm system and has only pitched 14.1 innings at Triple-A. Overall between Double-A and Triple-A, he has a 3.35 ERA with a very impressive 13.2 K/9.

Kyle Wright gets the call from the minors to make his second start of the season and first since April 16. Wright is taking the spot of Max Fried, who is on the 10-day IL with a blister on his left index finger. In his only start of the season, Wright pitched 4.1 innings, allowing two runs and striking out five against the Chicago Cubs.

Matchups To Lookout For

Kyle Wright vs. Jeff McNeil: 4-for-7 (.571), 2 Doubles

Kyle Wright vs. Dominic Smith: 3-for-6 (.500), Home Run, Walk

Morton Shuts Down Mets Offense, Stroman Injured in Braves 3-0 Victory

New York Yankees, New York Mets, Marcus Stroman

Heading into tonight, the New York Mets offense is on life support, and Atlanta Braves starter Charlie Morton was coming off his best start of the season. It was a combination set for disaster, and an untimely injury to Marcus Stroman led to a 3-0 victory in favor of the Braves.

Stroman got through one inning and threw three pitches in the second inning before leaving with left hip soreness. Judging by the motions on the mound, Stroman could not extend enough to finish his pitches properly. The injury was another one to a team that desperately needs everyone to remain healthy. Yennsy Diaz came in to relieve and worked into and out of a bases-loaded, no-out jam but striking out three in a row.

Diaz’s luck ran out in the following inning when the shift prevented the Mets from turning an inning-ending double play. Jeff McNeil and Francisco Lindor are known for their miscommunication up the middle, and it showed again. McNeil sprawled to get the ball instead of letting Lindor take it, which left second base vacated. It left Diaz to face Dansby Swanson, and he made the Mets pay by drilling a three-run home run. The homer turned out to be all the Braves needed as the Mets bullpen pitched six shutout innings to finish the victory.

Morton The Magician

Morton held a no-hitter for seven innings in his last start and was just as good tonight. Over seven innings, he held the Mets to just one hit while striking out 11. Even the one hit the Mets recorded was a lucky infield single from pinch-hitting pitcher Jerad Eickhoff. James McCann was responsible for the second hit with a ninth-inning double against Braves closer Will Smith.

Overall, the Mets offense looks ugly no matter how you look at the numbers. They have been scoreless in 17 consecutive innings and shut out for the fourth time in the last seven days. Even with the reinforcements coming off the IL, it will take more than one hitter to jumpstart the offense. They will have their chance to get going against Kyle Wright while the Mets have no clue who their starter will be for the final game of the series. The first pitch from Citi Field is another 7:10 p.m. ET start.

Mets Game Preview: (6/22/21) vs. Atlanta Braves (34-37)

After splitting their doubleheader on Monday, the New York Mets and Atlanta Braves play the third game of their series. Offense was at a premium on Monday as both teams combined for seven runs over the 14 innings they played. If the rain avoids Citi Field, the third game will be a 7:10 p.m. ET start.

The Mets offense has struggled mightily as last night marked their third shutout in the past week. Their offense took even more of a hit when Jonathan Villar left yesterday’s game with a calf injury after legging out a double. Villar walked himself off the field, but the Mets cannot catch a break with their injury problems. Luckily, with Jeff McNeil back in the fold, they will not need Villar to rush himself back.

Austin Riley has -1 defensive runs saved but made plenty of terrific plays to help the Braves take the second game last night. Ronald Acuna Jr. also continued to show why he is such an electric player. After failing to get anything going during game one, he homered and threw a 97 mph strike to third base to gun down a runner.

Pitching Matchup

Marcus Stroman makes his 15th start of the season and has become an innings eater for the Mets rotation. Stroman has completed at least six innings in each of his last nine starts. He has been able to go deep into games by throwing over two-third of his pitches for strikes and allowing just two walks per nine innings. Through 84.1 innings, Stroman has a 2.35 ERA and a 6-5 record.

The 37-year old veteran Charlie Morton takes the hill for the Braves and comes off a fantastic start against the St. Louis Cardinals. Morton pitched a season-high 7.2 innings and threw a season-high 112 pitches to shutout the Cards. Morton has not found his Cy Young caliber form yet but has been solid with a 4.03 ERA over 14 starts this season. In his last start against the Mets, he held them to one run over six innings with eight strikeouts.

Matchups To Lookout For

Charlie Morton vs. Francisco Lindor: 2-for-18 (.111), 2 Doubles, 5 Strikeouts

Marcus Stroman vs. Dansby Swanson: 4-for-8 (.500), Walk, 2 Strikeouts

Marcus Stroman vs. Ozzie Albies: 4-for-9 (.444), Strikeout

deGrom Amazes Again in Mets 4-2 Win Over Braves in Game One

New York Mets, Jacob deGrom

Jacob deGrom showed he was just fine in the New York Mets 4-2 victory over the Atlanta Braves. The Mets ace battled shoulder soreness in his previous start and showed no ill effects as he lit up the radar gun once again. The victory put the Mets six games ahead of the Braves as they head into game two of their doubleheader.

deGrom had everything working for him in five shutout innings and striking out six. He should have allowed no hits but miscommunication between Dominic Smith and Albert Almora Jr. in the outfield resulted in a ground-rule double. deGrom became the first pitcher to undergo an on-field “foreign substance” investigation for MLB’s new initiative. The Mets kept deGrom to just 70 pitches as they continue to treat him as carefully as possible.

Find Ways To Score

The Mets’ offense was lackluster against Braves starter Kyle Muller, who made his first big league start. They played small ball early in the first inning by bunting Jonathan Villar to second on a walk, moving him to third on a flyball, and scoring him on a wild pitch. Muller ended up pitching four solid innings, holding the Mets to a hit and the one run. Smith took care of the final three runs with his double in the bottom of the fifth.

Seth Lugo had the opportunity to complete a six-out save but did not look sharp in his one inning of work. Lugo allowed a two-run home run to Ozzie Albies and was bailed out by instant replay, which turned a Ronald Acuna Jr. hit by a pitch into a strikeout. Edwin Diaz stepped in to get the final three outs of the game and secure his 15th save of the season.

Ian Anderson takes the mound in game two for the Braves against a pitcher to be determined for the Mets. The first pitch from Citi Field should be thrown around 8:15 p.m. ET.

Mets Game(s) Preview: (6/21/21) vs. Atlanta Braves (33-36)

After a disappointing weekend in Washington D.C., the New York Mets return home for a crucial series against the Atlanta Braves. The Braves are five games behind the Mets, and the teams play four games in three days. Monday begins with a twi-night doubleheader, and game one begins at 5:10 p.m. ET from Citi Field.

The Mets struggling offense will get a massive boost as Jeff McNeil will return off the IL. McNeil has not played since May 16, when he injured his hamstring during the series against the Tampa Bay Rays. Before the injury, McNeil was only hitting .242 with three home runs and eight runs batted in. The offense needs the help as they have scored just nine runs in the last five games.

The Braves come off a big series win against the St. Louis Cardinals where they took three out of four games. They have severely underachieved but are still just five games out of first place. Ronald Acuna Jr. is putting up MVP again after a rough month of May. In June, Acuna is hitting .311/.463/.574 and has stolen nine bases as he pushes towards a 40/40 season.

Pitching Matchups

Game One:

Jacob deGrom returns to the mound after leaving his last start with shoulder sorness. In the start against the Chicago Cubs, deGrom faced eight batters and struck out eight of them to lower his ERA to 0.54 on the season. Luckily for the Mets, deGrom’s injury showed no damage which allows him to return to the mound on regular rest.

Kyle Muller makes the first start of his big league career after making one relief outing. The bullpen cameo did not go well as Muller allowed four hits and two runs to the Boston Red Sox. Mullet is just 23 and has a 3.17 ERA during his minor league career.

Game Two:

The Mets have not listed a starter for the second game as they have no idea how game one will play out. Jerad Eickhoff is with the team and is likely to pitch game two if all goes well for deGrom. If Eickhoff has to pitch in game one, the second one will likely be a bullpen game.

Ian Anderson is the definite starter for the Braves and is putting together a solid rookie campaign. Yes, despite getting rookie of the year votes in 2020, Anderson is still in his rookie season. Anderson went over the 50 inning threshold this season and has been a reliable piece of the Braves rotation. After having a 2.82 ERA through nine starts, Anderson has struggled slightly to put up a 5.59 ERA in his last four outings.

Matchups To Lookout For

Jacob deGrom vs. Freddie Freeman: 15-for-58 (.259), 2 Doubles, 3 Home Runs, 8 Walks, 16 Strikeouts

Jacob deGrom vs. Ronald Acuna Jr.: 8-for-25 (.320), Double, 2 Walks, 7 Strikeouts

Jacob deGrom vs. Ozzie Albies: 5-for-37 (.135), Double, Walk, 9 Strikeouts