On the night they traded Ike Davis to the Pittsburgh Pirates, the Mets were nearly no-hit as they opened a three-game series against the Atlanta Braves. While Jon Niese turned in a good start, the Mets’ lineup was utterly ineffective against Braves starter Aaron Harang, who held the Mets without a hit through seven innings.
If there was an upside in the game, it came in the form of Jon Niese, who gave up just one run in six innings on seven strikeouts, three hits, and four walks. In three starts, Niese is looking like the good version of his old self, and that’s undoubtedly good news for the Mets.
Given the Mets’ ineptitude at the plate, however, the lone run Niese allowed decided the game. Mets hitters made Harang looks outstanding, and if not for a high pitch count after seven innings, he very well could have completed the no-hitter.
Ahead by just a run going into the eighth inning, the Braves scored four times. All four runs were charged to Gonzalez Germen, who allowed a two-run home run to Freddie Freeman with nobody out in the inning. He then walked Justin Upton and, one out later, served up a run-scoring double to Dan Uggla. Of course, Uggla scored on the play after Travis d’Arnaud fielded a throw from the outfield and threw it right back out there as he tried to throw out Uggla at third base. One Chris Johnson single later, his night was over, and Scott Rice entered the game. He gave up a double, which plated Johnson and put the Braves up 5-0.
That was pretty much it. The Mets went down quietly in the eighth, Jeurys Familia gave up one run in the top of the ninth, and the Mets were retired quickly again in the bottom of that frame.
The series continues on at 7:10 pm EDT on Saturday night at Citi Field.
SB Nation GameThreads
Win Probability Added
Big winners: Jon Niese, +13.7% WPA
Big losers: Gonzalez Germen, -19.5% WPA, Curtis Granderson, -12.3% WPA
Teh aw3s0mest play: Freddie Freeman’s GIDP in the third, +9.4% WPA
Teh sux0rest play: Chris Johnson’s run-scoring double in the second, -16.3% WPA
Total pitcher WPA: -3.1% WPA
Total batter WPA: -46.9% WPA
GWRBI!: Chris Johnson