Mets-Braves Preview

The Associated Press

The Atlanta Braves are surging, and now they finally have a win over the New York Mets.

Jason Heyward will try to help them make it two in less than 24 hours, as they host the NL East rival Mets in the finale of a three-game set Wednesday afternoon.

Atlanta (6-5) has won six of seven after beating New York 9-3 on Tuesday, when it scored six runs in the first two innings. The Braves had lost all four previous meetings this season with the Mets (7-4), including a 6-1 defeat in Monday's series opener.

"We wanted to score early and take some pressure off ourselves," rookie shortstop Tyler Pastornicky said Tuesday after his two-run double in a five-run second inning helped chase Mets ace Johan Santana.

Heyward, who had an RBI single off Santana, has at least one hit in each of the last seven games, batting .440 with two homers in that span. He tends to thrive against Mets pitching at Turner Field, hitting .333 in 19 meetings there.

Heyward is 4 for 13 with one double and one triple and five walks against probable Mets starter R.A. Dickey (2-0, 2.08 ERA).

The knuckleballer has given New York 14 straight quality starts since July 25. He yielded one run in seven innings of Friday's 5-2 victory over Cliff Lee and Philadelphia, scattering nine hits while striking out seven.

Dickey was also impressive in his season debut against the Braves on April 7, allowing two runs in six innings of a 4-2 home victory.

He hasn't been as successful in Atlanta, where he's 0-1 with a 3.38 ERA in four games - three starts. He was the hard-luck loser there in a 1-defeat Sept. 17, allowing one run, three hits and six walks over 7 2-3 innings.

Mets third baseman David Wright is 8 for 17 with a solo homer in four games since returning from a broken pinkie, and at least one hit in all eight games he's played this season, batting .517 with two homers.

He's hitting .400 with three homers and nine RBIs over his last nine meetings with Atlanta.

The Braves will give the ball to Jair Jurrjens (0-1, 7.71), who will try again to win for just the second time since last year's All-Star break. The right-hander is 1-4 with a 6.22 ERA in nine starts since, surrendering 13 homers and a .309 opponent batting average.

Jurrjens' struggles continued Friday, as he allowed five runs and seven hits - two homers - in five innings but escaped without a not decision in a 10-8 win over Milwaukee.

He wasn't much better six days earlier opposite Dickey in Flushing, giving up three runs and seven hits, including two that left the park, before getting pulled with one out in the fifth.

Jurrjens has won five of six home starts against the Mets, compiling a 2.13 ERA. However, the one blemish came in his most recent matchup June 14, when he yielded four runs in 5 1-3 innings.