Final Score: Mets 7 Braves 5

IMG_2545The Least You Should Know…

Shaun Marcum lasted just 4 1/3 innings, allowing three runs and six hits.

LaTroy Hawkins allowed one inherited runner to score in the fifth, but was otherwise perfect in 1 2/3 innings of relief.

Mike Minor allowed two home runs in seven innings – a two-run homer to John Buck and an opposite field, solo home run to Lucas Duda – after retiring the previous 18 batters he faced.

Scott Atchison allowed two walks and a run in the seventh inning, and Brandon Lyon allowed a go-ahead, solo home run to Evan Gattis in the eighth inning.

However, David Wright hit a game-tying solo home run against Craig Kimbrel in the ninth inning.

The Mets scored two runs after the first two batters of the tenth inning were retired: Ruben Tejada drove Jordany Valdespin in with a go-ahead, RBI single and Daniel Murphy delivered an insurance run with an RBI single to drive in Mike Baxter.

Jeurys Familia recorded his first big league save with a scoreless tenth inning.

For a full recap and box score, check out SNY.TV.

Michael Baron, Contributor

This was a huge win for the Mets tonight. They played well, scratched and clawed all night, battled a short outing from Marcum, and beat up a stellar Atlanta bullpen in a building the Mets have looked pretty bad playing in over the better part of the last 20 years.

The Mets needed 5 2/3 innings from the bullpen tonight. When that happens, their chances of winning are pretty low. The Mets got lucky tonight thanks to some clutch hitting from Byrd, Wright, Tejada and Murphy, and they bailed out Atchison and Lyon, both of whom struggled tonight. If Terry Collins could just be in position to better mix and match late in games – as opposed to dealing with limited options on a semi-regular basis as a result of short outings from the starters – perhaps the bullpen would perform a little bit better.

It’s not often anyone gets to the Braves bullpen, but the Mets did just that with some real quality at-bats against some excellent relievers in some real tough spots. Kudos to this offense, a group that has badly struggled over the last couple of weeks.

Marcum pitched well for four innings, but his inability to put hitters away ultimately cost him the ability to provide some quality length tonight. He faded in the fifth inning as he left a lot of pitches up in the strike zone, and he forced Terry Collins’ hand and had to remove him from the game. Marcum is clearly still building his way back – he hardly pitched during Spring Training and he’s been stopping and starting for more than two months. Hopefully this was another step for him, but this is clearly going to be a long process for him.

There were a number of heroes in this game – it was a total team effort. But Collins deserves a ton of credit for maneuvering through the tenth inning, navigating his bullpen, and pressing all the right buttons overall. Just an outstanding job managing the roster today and finding a way to get it done against an excellent Braves team. That was easily his best performance at the helm since he became this club’s manager…

W.B. Mason Post Game Extra:

The Mets and Braves continue their series tomorrow night at Turner Field, with Jon Niese facing Julio Teheran at 7:10 pm.