Mets vs. Braves Preview, Lineups, And Broadcast Info: Game #139 — Jeremy Hefner vs. Kris Medlen

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Today's game notes, courtesy of @Mets.

Teams: Mets vs. Braves
Date: Saturday, September 8, 2012 • 4:05 p.m
Location: Citi Field • Flushing, NY
Starters: RHP Kris Medlen (7-1, 1.56) vs. RHP Jeremy Hefner (2-5, 4.52)
TV/Radio: FOX • WFAN • WQBU
Info: Game #139 • Home Game #67

Lineup

Mike Baxter – RF
Daniel Murphy – 2B
David Wright – 3B
Ike Davis – 1B
Lucas Duda – LF
Ruben Tejada – SS
Jordany Valdespin – CF
Josh Thole – C
Jeremy Hefner – RHP

METS AT A GLANCE: The Mets have dropped three of their last four games and are 6-4 in their last 10 games...The Mets are 19-33 (4-16 at home) since the All-Star break...The Mets were shut out for the ninth time this season last night.

AT HOME: The Mets are 30-36 at home this year...New York has lost 17 of its last 21 home games...The Mets will play 15 of their remaining 24 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 (.323) in the National League.

THREE RUNS OR LESS: The Mets have scored three runs or less in eight consecutive home games…The streak is the team’s longest since 2003, when that squad also went eight games.

SATURDAY: New York is 14-8 on Saturdays this year...The 14 wins on Saturdays is tied for the fifth-most in the majors.

DAY BASEBALL: Daniel Murphy (.351) ranks first in the National League in batting average during day games and David Wright (.326) is third...Justin Turner is hitting .415 (22-53) during day games but does not have enough plate appearances to qualify...New York is 29-22 in day games this season, including 14-12 at home...The 29 victories are the third-most in the majors.

DANIEL MURPHY: Singled in the first inning last night to extend his hitting streak to nine games…Murphy is hitting .350 (14-40) during his streak, which dates back to August 28.

WRIGHT RANKINGS: David Wright is fourth in the majors with a .402 on-base percentage, is tied for eighth with 37 doubles and is fifth in the National League with a .312 batting average...He ranks second in the NL with 75 walks.

R.A. DICKEY: Is tied for the major league lead with 18 wins...Dickey is third in the majors and second in the National League with a 2.64 ERA and he is fifth in the majors and third in the NL with 195 strikeouts...He leads the NL and is tied for second in the majors 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.

BULLPEN: The Mets pen hurled 3.0 innings last night allowing two runs ...The Mets pen has allowed six runs over its last 34.2 innings (1.56 ERA), spanning 12 games.

JENRRY MEJIA: Made his first appearance last night since September 15, 2010...He worked 2.0 innings...Mejia underwent Tommy John surgery on May 16 of last year.

RISP TALE OF TWO HALVES: The Mets went 0-10 with runners in scoring position last night and are hitting .205 (83-405) in such situations since the All-Star break…They are 19-33 in the second half of the season…In the first half, the team hit .269 (199-739) with RISP and went 46-40...Overall, the Mets are hitting .247 with RISP on the season, ranking 21st in the majors...The Mets are hitting .261 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 3.77 ERA...The starters have posted a 2.78 ERA (37 earned runs/119.2 innings) over their last 19 games and over their last 24 contests they have a 2.96 ERA (50 earned runs/152.0 innings).

JEREMY HEFNER: Has worked 6.0 or more innings in six of his last eight starts...Hefner has allowed three earned runs over his last 14.0 innings (1.93 ERA) with 11 strikeouts...Hefner has also allowed two or fewer runs in three of his last four starts.

JONATHON NIESE: Has not walked more than two batters in any of his last 17 starts while pitching 6.0 innings or more...That stretch is the longest in team history...The previous best was Pedro Martinez (12 such straight starts in 2005).

CHIPPER JONES VS. THE METS: Chipper Jones has hit .312 (264- 845) in 240 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).

BROOKLYN: The Brooklyn Cyclones defeated Hudson Valley, 4-0, last night in game one of a best-of-three New York-Penn League semifinal series...RHP Hansel Robles tossed a complete-game four-hit shutout with 10 strikeouts...Robles has not allowed an earned run in his last 45.0 innings dating back to July 28...Shortstop Philip Evans went 2-4 with an RBI and 2011 first-round pick outfielder Brandon Nimmo was 1-4 with a run scored...Game two is tonight at 7:05 p.m. with RHP Luis Mateo (4-5, 2.45) on the mound for the Cyclones.

METS TO HONOR LITTLE LEAGUERS: Prior to today’s game, the Mets will honor the Par Troy East Little League from Parsippany, NJ, who represented the Mid-Atlantic region at the Little League World Series in Williamsport this year.

STERLING AWARDS: The organizational minor league awards will be presented in an on-field ceremony prior to today’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.

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.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY: Bobby Parnell turns 28 today.

LAST START: Received a no-decision in the Mets’ 5-3 win over the Miami Marlins on September 1 at Marlins Park...Pitched 6.0 innings allowing two runs, earned, six hits, and one walk...Struck out four...Has allowed three earned runs in his last 14.0 innings pitched (1.93 ERA).

LAST FOUR STARTS: Over his last four starts dating to August 4, Hefner has gone 1-1 with a 3.24 ERA (nine earned runs/25.0 innings pitched)...Held hitters to a .250 batting average over those starts... Surrendered more than two earned runs once in the four starts (five earned runs on August 19 at Nationals Park)...Has walked two and struck out 16 during his run.

CAREER AS A STARTER: Hefner has made nine career starts...In those eight starts, the 26-year old rookie has posted a 2-4 record with a 4.64 ERA (27 earned runs/52.1 innings pitched)...Hefner has struck out 38 while issuing just eight walks, good for a 4.75 K/BB ratio.

LAST RELIEF OUTING: Last pitched on August 15 in relief of R.A. Dickey at Cincinnati...Pitched 2.0 innings, allowing one run, earned, and three hits...Struck out one, while picking up a no-decision.

2012 RELIEF: Hefner has made 12 relief appearances this season, most recently on August 15 at Cincinnati...In those 12 appearances Hefner is 0-1 and has pitched to a 4.24 ERA (11 earned runs/23.1 innings pitched)...Has walked four and struck out nine in those 23.1 innings...His lone loss in relief was in Toronto when he pitched 5.0 innings.

INNINGS PITCHED: Hefner set a career-high in innings pitched in his start on August 28 vs. Houston with 8.0 innings pitched...His previous high was 6.0 innings, done four time previously, most recently on August 8 at San Diego, when he earned his second win of the season.

SINCE ALL-STAR BREAK: Since the All-Star break, Hefner is 1-2 with a 3.77 ERA (19 earned runs/45.1 innings pitched) in 10 games, six starts...Pitched to a 5.64 ERA (19 earned runs/30.1 innings pitched) in 11 games, three starts before the break...Ten of Hefner’s 12 walks this season have come since the All-Star break.

CONTROL: Hefner has walked 12 in 75.2 major league innings this season, including only eight walks in nine starts...Has a K//BB of 5.60 and a BB/9 of 1.4.

RUNNERS ON: Opponents are hitting .293 (39-133) when runners are on base...Furthermore, opponents are hitting .296 (21-71) with six doubles, two home runs, and 29 RBI with runners in scoring position, and .250 (9-36) in such situations with two outs...Hitters are batting .276 (48-174) when he pitches with the bases empty.

FIRST HOME RUN AND WIN: According to Stats LLC, Hefner became the first pitcher to hit his first career home run in his first career win since Dennis Tankersley accomplished the feat while with San Diego in 2002.

2012 MINOR LEAGUE STARTS: In nine minor league starts for Buffalo (AAA) of the International League, Hefner was 5-2 with a 2.77 ERA (19 earned runs/61.2 innings pitched)...Pitched at least 7.0 innings in six of those nine starts, and pitched into the eighth in two of them...Had six quality starts while pitching for Buffalo.

MINOR LEAGUE CAREER TOTALS: In 141 career games, 129 starts, Hefner is 51-36 with a 3.75 ERA (313 earned runs/750.1 innings pitched)...Won a career-high 14 games in 2009 while pitching for Lake Elsinore (A+) of the California League and Portland (AAA) of the Pacific Coast League.

MINOR LEAGUE CAREER: With the Mets farm system this season after being claimed off waivers from the Pittsburgh Pirates on November 18, 2011...Was drafted by the San Diego Padres in the 10th round of the 2007 First-Year Player Draft...Originally drafted by the Mets in the 46th round of 2004 First-Year Player Draft and again in the 48th round of the 2005 First-Year Player Draft, but did not sign either time.

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