A misjudged fly ball by Lucas Duda led to a five-run Atlanta 3rd, and the Mets 8th-inning comeback came up short, as they fell to the Braves 9-4.
The Bad Stuff:
- One run was in already for the Braves in the bottom of the 3rd, but a fly ball to left by Freddie Freeman created all sorts of trouble for Lucas Duda, who circled under it and failed to catch what became a two-run double. When the dust had finally settled, Jonathon Niese had given up seven runs on seven hits and six walks. He would last only one more inning.
- Down 8-2, the Mets got a couple runs home and leaded the bases, but Marlon Byrd swung and missed at ball four from Eric O'Flaherty to kill the rally.
- David Wright homered in his third straight game, blasting a two-run shot in the top of the 4th.
- Brandon Lyon and Scott Atchison each had an inning of scoreless relief.
I'm convinced that even Mother Nature is against the Mets this season. Every time they seem to get a winning streak going, the weather steps in and wreaks havoc on the playing schedule, whether it's rain in Atlanta or snow in Minneapolis and Denver.
But it wasn't just the unexpected day off: Jonathon Niese is not pitching the way we expected him to. His ERA now stands at an unexceptional 4.66. Niese needs to get back confidence in his pitches. The old adage for the 1940s Boston Braves was "Spahn and Sain and pray for rain." The Mets thought they would have both halves of their "pray for rain" duo in Niese and Matt Harvey. Only Harvey has kept up his end of the bargain in 2013. While the two-man rotation is highly, highly unlikely, a one-man band would be utterly impossible.