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Braves win, set record in Jones' final regular-season home game

The SportsXchange

ATLANTA -- David Ross' second-inning, three-run home run led the Braves to a 6-2 win over the Mets in Chipper Jones' final regular-season home game on Sunday.

The Braves have won 23 consecutive games started by Kris Medlen, a major league record, surpassing the 22 straight victories in games started by the Yankees' Whitey Ford from 1950-53 (he missed the 1951-52 seasons due to military service) and the Giants' Carl Hubbell in 1936-37.

Medlen (10-1) was 3-0 with a 1.46 ERA in his five previous starts this month and 2-2 with a 1.66 ERA in two starts versus the Mets this season. He allowed only three hits in six innings Sunday, and only one of the hits, Ruben Tejada's third-inning single, led to a Mets run. Even that one was unearned, thanks to Freddie Freeman's two-base throwing error.

"Under the radar is really how I prefer it," Medlen said. "I think the best thing about it is my name is in the history books. but it's a team thing."

Jenrry Mejia, coming off his first major league win last Monday at Citi Field, did a pretty good job holding the Braves down except for that second inning, when he allowed a lead-off walk to Jones and a double to Freeman before Ross' homer.

"That was a good pitch," a grinning Mejia said of the pitch to Ross, "but he's a good hitter."

That fit the pattern for what got Mejia (1-2) in trouble before: falling behind in the count and having to throw a lot of pitches early.

"I thought he threw the ball good today." manager Terry Collins said. "He made a real bad throw to Ross, right down the middle. But his two-seamer was the best one I've seen him have. They're working on re-gaining the cutter."

The Mets scored a run in the ninth off Cory Gearrin as rain started falling, prompting manager Fredi Gonzalez to go to closer Craig Kimbrel to finish the job and get his 42nd save.

In his final regular-season home game, Jones was 1-for-2 with two walks and made two across-the-diamond throws from his knees for outs.

"He didn't want to come out of the game," Gonzalez said. "I tried to pinch-hit for him, get a big ovation for him. He said, 'I want to finish this.' "

"To be honest with you," Jones said, "I saw us winning this game early and I wanted to go give my mom and dad a hug after the game. If I had taken myself out of the game, I'd be in here watching fantasy football."

Notes: The Mets wore football jerseys to the ballpark Sunday, the latest theme day instigated by Collins, who chose Detroit Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford's jersey. Spying Jay Horwitz, the Mets vice president of media relations, in a New York Giants jersey, Collins quipped, "Andy Robustelli's turning over in his grave right now." . . . Third baseman David Wright sat out Sunday's game as a scheduled day off. It had nothing to do with being plunked in the groin by a Kimbrel pitch in the ninth inning of Saturday's game. . . . Catcher Josh Thole, who was hit by a Medlen line drive in the dugout, is fine. He was examined by a doctor at the ballpark and has no concussion, just a swollen right ear. . . .R.A. Dickey will start for the Mets Tuesday against the Marlins and Jeurys Familia will start Wednesday. Collins "really, really" likes what he's seen from Familia out of the bullpen, but he has been a starter, and Collins wants to see what he's got in that role. . . . Gonzalez is staying away from using Eric O'Flaherty after O'Flaherty woke up with a stiff back Friday morning. This is a chronic issue he can manage his way through -- although it's the first time it's bothered him this season. Gonzalez doesn't want to chance having it worsen. He hopes to find a spot to give O'Flaherty a little work against the Pirates Tuesday or Wednesday, ahead of next Friday's wild card game. . . .Michael Bourn was added to the line-up, leading off, a little more than an hour before game time. He had been out since jamming his left thumb sliding into second base last Saturday in Philadelphia.
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