Tejada’s 4 RBIs help Mets slow Braves
ATLANTA (AP)—The New York Mets were reeling when they arrived in Atlanta. They left with renewed confidence.
Atlanta, which is 3 1/2 games ahead of St. Louis in the NL wild-card standings, lost two of three to the Mets, who arrived with a six-game losing streak. New York went 6-4 at Atlanta this year, its first winning record at Turner Field since 2008.
New York showed the kind of tenacity that manager Terry Collins said was lacking during a 1-8 homestand that ended Thursday.
“Even late in the season, where we’re not really playing for anything, (the Braves) want to win over there,” Gee said, “so we want to come in and play the best we can.”
Tejada put the Mets ahead 4-1 with a three-run double in a four-run fourth. After pinch-hitter Ronny Paulino’s(notes) bases-loaded walk in the eighth against Jonny Venters(notes) (6-2) tied it at 5, Tejada singled to put the Mets ahead for good.
Duda’s homer was just the second this year off Kimbrel, the NL saves leader.
“Craig’s one of the best,” Duda said. “Luckily, I just connected and it went out of the park.”
Tim Byrdak(notes) (2-0) won despite allowing a go-ahead single in the seventh to Freddie Freeman(notes), who had been on an 0-for-15 slide. Manny Acosta(notes) got four outs for his second save in five chances.
“We gave up the go-ahead run, but this team has been battling back all year, and that’s exactly what we did today,” Byrdak said. “To get a win out of it is great, but our job in the bullpen is to pick each other up down there.”
Venters walked three in the eighth for Atlanta, which walked nine overall. The teams combined for 17 walks.
“The last time I faced him, all the pitches I swung at were balls,” Paulino said of Venters. “I decided to be more selective this time. I know he has a good sinker, and you have to have a specific zone to look for. I didn’t he threw it where I was looking for it.”
Venters, who leads the majors with 81 appearances, insisted he isn’t bothered by fatigue.
“I just didn’t throw the ball over the plate today,” Venters said. “No excuses. I just couldn’t throw strikes. It’s September. It’s time to dig down deep. I cost my team the win. Just go out tomorrow and try to get it done.”
A rookie making his first career appearance against New York, Beachy allowed five runs, five hits and four walks in 4 1-3 innings with eight strikeouts. Gee gave up four runs, eight hits and five walks in 4 1-3 innings. His ERA has climbed to 4.48 from 3.05 on June 10.
NOTES: RF Jason Heyward(notes) threw out Justin Turner(notes) at the plate when he tried to score on Tejada’s go-ahead single. … New York CF Angel Pagan(notes) missed the game with a sore quadriceps. … Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez wanted to give Freeman the day off, but the rookie entered during a double switch in the fifth. … Atlanta RHP Tommy Hanson(notes), sidelined with right shoulder tendinitis, will pitch two or three innings—a maximum of 35 pitches—Monday in the Instructional League. … Braves RHP Jair Jurrjens(notes), out with a right knee strain, is scheduled to throw off a mound Monday in Miami before Atlanta plays the Marlins. … Atlanta RHP Kris Medlen(notes), who’s missed the season to recover from elbow ligament-replacement surgery, threw batting practice Sunday and is to throw off a mound Wednesday and Thursday in the Instructional League. … Mets LHP Tim Bydak agreed to a 2012 contract.