Mets vs. Braves Preview, Lineups, And Broadcast Info: Game #138 — Jonathon Niese vs. Paul Maholm

Stretch.

Today's game notes, courtesy of @Mets.

Teams: Mets vs. Braves
Date: Friday, September 7, 2012 • 7:10 p.m
Location: Citi Field • Flushing, NY
Starters: LHP Paul Maholm (11-9, 3.79) vs. LHP Jonathon Niese (10-8, 3.55)
TV/Radio: SNY • WFAN • WQBU
Info: Game #138 • Home Game #66

Lineup

Ronny Cedeno – SS
Daniel Murphy – 2B
David Wright – 3B
Scott Hairston – RF
Ike Davis – 1B
Kelly Shoppach – C
Jason Bay – LF
Andres Torres – CF
Jonathon Niese – LHP

METS AT A GLANCE: New York went 6-3 on its recent nine-game road trip and is 7-3 in its last 10 games...The Mets are 19-32 (4-15 at home) since the All-Star break...New York is 17-27 in the first game of a series this year, including 8-13 at home.

AT HOME: The Mets are 30-35 at home this year...New York has won its last two home games after dropping 16 of its previous 18 home games...New York will play 16 of its remaining 25 games at Citi Field ...The Mets have won one second-half series at home (August 24-26 vs. Houston)...Daniel Murphy has the seventh-best home batting average (.326) in the National League.

KIDS GO FREE IN SEPTEMBER: The Mets launched Kids Go Free to Mets games at Citi Field in September...Up to three children 12 and under will get free admission with the purchase of one regularly priced ticket, subject to availability for every September home game...Tickets are available via phone (718) 507-TIXX and in person at Citi Field...All tickets must be picked up at Citi Field the day of the game and children must be present.

R.A. DICKEY: Is tied for the major league lead with 18 wins...Dickey is fourth in the majors and second in the National League with a 2.64 ERA and he is tied for fourth in the majors and second in the NL with 195 strikeouts...He leads the NL and is tied for second with five complete games...Dickey also leads the NL with three shutouts...Dickey is second in the NL in innings pitched and second in the majors with a 1.0253 WHIP.

WINNING WAYS: R.A. Dickey is the first Mets pitcher to reach 18 wins since Frank Viola (20-12) and Dwight Gooden (19-7) both accomplished the feat in 1990...Dickey won his 11th day game on Wednesday...Only Tom Seaver (12-5 in 1975) had more victories during the day in a single-season in team history.

IKE DAVIS: Belted his 26th home run on Wednesday at St. Louis, his 19th road home run to lead the National League...It was his eighth home run with at least two runners aboard, the most in the majors...Davis became the first Mets player with eight or more home runs with at least two runners on in one season since Todd Hundley hit nine in 1996 ...Davis’ 26 home runs are tied for the fifth-most by a Mets first baseman with Mo Vaughn (2002)...Eddie Murray is fourth on the list with 27 home runs in 1993.

WRIGHT RANKINGS: David Wright is fourth in the majors with a .403 on-base percentage, is tied for ninth with 37 doubles and is fifth in the National League with a .313 batting average...He ranks second in the NL with 75 walks.

SCOTT HAIRSTON: Is hitting .318 (49-154) with nine home runs and 27 RBI vs. left-handers this year...His nine home runs are tied for the ninth-most in the National League.

BULLPEN: The Mets pen hurled 2.1 scoreless innings on Wednesday, ...The Mets pen has allowed four runs over its last 31.2 innings (1.14 ERA), spanning 11 games.

RISP: The Mets are 16-for-their-last-96 (.167) with RISP...The Mets are hitting .176 (40-227) with runners in scoring position since August 1 ...The Mets are hitting .249 with RISP on the season, ranking 19th in the majors...The Mets are hitting .263 with runners in scoring position and two outs, the fourth-highest average in the majors.

METS STARTERS: Mets starters rank eighth in the majors with a 3.79 ERA...The starters have posted a 2.85 ERA (36 earned runs/113.2 innings) over their last 18 games and over their last 23 contests they have a 3.02 ERA (49 earned runs/146.0 innings).

JONATHON NIESE: Has not walked more than two batters in any of his last 16 starts while pitching 6.0 innings or more...That stretch is the longest in team history...The previous best was Pedro Martinez (22 such straight starts in 2005)...Niese has pitched at least 6.0 innings in 16 straight starts, dating to June 3 and has gone 7.0 innings in 11 of his last 15 starts...The streak is the longest single-season stretch by a Mets pitcher since Pedro Martinez had 22 straight such starts in 2005 (April 4-August 3).

CHIPPER JONES VS. THE METS: Chipper Jones has hit .314 (264- 841) in 239 career games vs. the Mets...Jones has 49 home runs (tied for the second-most by any visiting player in franchise history), 158 RBI (3rd-most), 167 runs scored (2nd-most) and 46 doubles (7th-most).

ST. LUCIE: St. Lucie lost the third and deciding game of its Florida State League semifinal vs. Jupiter, 11-7, last night...Infielder Danny Muno was 3-5 with a double, triple and two RBI for St. Lucie.

BROOKLYN: The Cyclones will take on the Hudson Valley Renegades in game one of a best-of-three playoff series tonight...RHP Hansel Robles, who led the NYPL and established a franchise record with a 1.11 ERA, will start for Brooklyn...All tickets for the playoff action at MCU Park are $10 and are on sale now by calling 718-507-TIXX, visiting the MCU Park box office or at BrooklynCyclones.com.

METS TO HONOR LITTLE LEAGUERS: The Mets will honor the Fairfield American Little League team from Fairfield, CT, who represented New England prior to tonight’s game and New York will welcome Par Troy East Little League from Parsippany, NJ, who represented the Mid-Atlantic region in Williamsport, before tomorrow’s contest.

STERLING AWARDS: The organizational minor league awards will be presented in an on-field ceremony prior to tomorrow’s game...The Sterling Organizational Player of the Year is infielder Wilmer Flores...The Sterling Pitcher of the Year is RHP Rafael Montero...The Sterling recipient, emblematic of the MVP at Buffalo is RHP Matt Harvey; Binghamton: LHP Zack Wheeler; St. Lucie: outfielder Alonzo Harris; Savannah: RHP Michael Fulmer; Brooklyn: RHP Hansel Robles; Kingsport: RHP Miller Diaz; Dominican Summer League #1: RHP Yoryi Nuez and Dominican Summer League #2: outfielder Vicente Lupo.

LAST START: Received a loss when the Mets fell to the Phillies, 3-2, at Citizens Bank Park on August 30...Pitched 6.0 innings, allowing three runs, earned, a season-high tying nine hits, and one walk...Struck out four in the 96-pitch outing...Has won double-digit games for the second consecutive season...Won a career-high 11 games last season.

LAST FOUR STARTS VS. BRAVES: In 10 career games, all starts, Niese is 5-2 with a 3.32 ERA (22 earned runs/59.2 innings pitched)...Has won his last four starts against the Braves, dating to June 14 of last season...In his last four starts vs. Atlanta, Niese has held the Braves to a .235 batting average, and has allowed seven extra-base hits (five doubles, one triple, one home run) in 25.1 innings pitched...His last loss vs. Atlanta was on September 17, 2010...His five career wins are tied with the Phillies for most wins against any team.

HOME RUNS: Niese has given up a home run in seven of his last 11 starts, dating to July 3...Has given up a career-high tying 20 home runs this season...Gave up a career-high four home runs in his start on May 18 at Toronto.

WALKS: Has allowed 16 walks in his last 16 starts, a span of 109.2 innings pitched, dating to June 3...Has walked more than one four times in those 16 starts and has not walked more than two...Prior to this stretch, Niese had allowed 18 base-on-balls over a six-start stretch (29.2 innings pitched) from May 1 to May 28...Niese’s 25.1 innings without a walk marks the longest streak by a Mets pitcher since 2011, when Mike Pelfrey went 25.0 innings without a base-on-balls from June 2-24.

RARE COMPANY: Niese has issued nine walks in his last 10 starts and became the seventh pitcher in Mets history to throw at least 7.0 innings and not walk a batter in three consecutive starts (July 8-27) in one season...The last major league pitcher to do that was Cliff Lee, who did it in four straight starts in June, 2010.

INNINGS PITCHED: Since June 10, Niese has pitched 103.2 innings, spanning 15 starts, 15th-most in the majors and ninth in the NL over that time...Has pitched at least 6.0 innings in 16 straight starts, dating to June 3 and has gone 7.0 innings in 11 of his last 15 starts...The streak is the longest for the Mets since R.A. Dickey went 17 straight starts of 6.0 innings or more from July 8, 2011 to April 13, 2012.

SCORELESS STREAK: Had a scoring streak of 14.1 innings snapped on August 24 against the Astros...The streak dated from the third inning against the Braves on August 12th to the second inning against the Astros on August 24...This was the longest such streak of this season and of his career.

SUCCESS VS. LEFTIES: Niese has held left-handed hitters to a .231 batting average (27-117) this season, with two home runs and six walks...Conversely, Niese has allowed 18 home runs and 35 walks to right-handers....For his career, lefties are hitting .263 (115-437).

RECENT SUCCESS: In his previous 18 starts dating to May 23, Niese is 8-6 with a 3.09 ERA (42 earned runs/122.1 innings pitched)...Has a 7.3 K/9 mark and 13 quality starts over that stretch...Has compiled a 2.66 ERA (six earned runs/20.1 innings) over his last three starts dating to August 18...Has allowed three earned runs or fewer in 19 of his 26 starts this season.

DAY/NIGHT SPLITS: In 11 starts during the day this season, Niese is 4-2 with a 2.99 ERA (24 earned runs/72.1 innings)...In 15 night starts, the left-hander is 6-6 with a 3.98 ERA (41 earned runs/92.2 innings)...Niese has allowed 15 of his 20 home runs this season during night games...For his career, Niese has compiled a 13-10 record with a 3.67 ERA (80 earned runs/196.0 innings pitched) during the day in 33 starts, compared to his 19-21 mark with a 4.40 ERA (166 earned runs/339.2 innings pitched) at night in 57 starts.

CAREER-HIGH STRIKEOUTS: On June 3 vs St. Louis, Niese established a new career-high in strikeouts with 10...His previous high was eight, done four times previous, most recently on June 9, 2011 at Milwaukee...He was the third of the four Mets starter this season to record at least one game with double-digit strikeouts.

LAST WIN VS. ATLANTA: Won, 6-5, at Citi Field on August 12... Pitched a season-high tying 8.0 innings and allowed one run, earned, six hits, a home run and two walks... Struck out six.

LAST LOSS VS. ATLANTA: Lost, 6-4, at Citi Field on September 17, 2010...Pitched 4.0 innings and allowed six runs, zero earned, five hits, three walks, and one home run...Struck out four.

CAREER VS. ATLANTA: In 10 career games, all starts, Niese is 5-2 with a 3.32 ERA (22 earned runs/59.2 innings pitched) vs the Braves.

KEY MATCHUPS:

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