Rain forces postponement of Mets-Braves game
ATLANTA 0, NY METS 0
By GEORGE HENRY
ATLANTA (AP) -- Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez and Mets manager
Terry Collins see signs that their teams are both emerging from
an offensive slump.
Despite having rain postpone Saturday's game, Gonzalez and
Collins were pleased that their clubs looked better the night
before as the Mets rallied for a 7-5 victory in 10 innings.
Atlanta and New York have suffered from inconsistency at the
plate beyond a few players off to good starts.
The Braves have been led by Justin Upton, the NL player of the
month for April, NL rookie of the month Evan Gattis and Chris
Johnson, who began Friday as the NL batting leader. But B.J.
Upton, Dan Uggla and injured right fielder Jason Heyward are all
hitting .179 or worse.
The good news for Atlanta, which has scored at least six runs
only three times in the past 15 games, is six-time All-Star
catcher Brian McCann should be back from the disabled list soon.
McCann, who underwent surgery to repair a torn labrum last
October, could be activated on Monday at Cincinnati.
Heyward will likely need another couple of weeks to recover from
an appendectomy. When he returns, the Braves hope he flashes the
talent that resulted in 27 homers, 82 RBIs and 21 stolen bases
The Mets had gone 4-8 over their previous 12 games and were
hitting .202 with runners in scoring position over that span,
but John Buck, the NL RBI leader, had not disappointed, and the
same was true of David Wright and Lucas Duda.
But Collins gave struggling first baseman Ike Davis the night
off, and center fielder Collin Cowgill was optioned to Triple-A
Las Vegas before the game after hitting .155 with one homer and
five RBIs in his previous 46 at-bats.
The Mets rediscovered their power stroke on Friday.
Buck kept up his torrid pace with a two-run homer in the first
inning, and Lucas Duda followed with a solo shot in the second
before Mike Minor settled down and retired the next 18 batters
In the eighth, New York became one of the few teams this year to
solve a Braves bullpen that led the majors with a 1.94 ERA and
was tied for the best opponents' batting average at .208.
"Usually when you give our guys a lead, they're going to shut it
down," Gonzalez said. "But they ended up getting four runs
against our bullpen from the eighth inning on. That doesn't
usually happen against our guys."
Marlon Byrd homered off setup man Eric O'Flaherty to force a
4-all tie in the eighth. Wright homered off Atlanta Craig
Kimbrel, one of the majors' most dominant closers over the last
three years, to make it 5-5 in the ninth.
After scoring two runs in the 10th off Jordan Walden, the Mets
had their first victory since Sept. 18, 1993 when trailing in
the ninth at Atlanta.
Collins called it the most important victory of the year.
"I think it is, coming in here facing these guys who are leading
the league," Collins said. "It's pretty special."
Sunday's game was expected to go on as scheduled even with heavy
rain forecast in metro Atlanta until 9 a.m.
Both teams pushed their Saturday starters back one day with New
York's Jonathon Niese (2-2) to face Julio Teheran (1-0).
On Tuesday at home against the Chicago White Sox, the Mets hope
to get another boost from rookie starter Matt Harvey, the NL
pitcher of the month who went 4-0 with a 1.56 ERA and a .156
opponents' batting average in six April starts.
Tim Hudson, coming off his 200th career win, will pitch for
Atlanta on Monday against the Reds.
The Braves announced that a makeup date for Saturday has yet to
be determined. Tickets already purchased can be exchanged for
the makeup game or for another game this season subject to
Atlanta, which began the day with a 2 1/2-game lead over
Washington in the NL East, has lost three straight and 11 of 16.
New York has won two in a row after losing six straight.
St Louis Cardinals
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