The Atlanta Braves won their fifth straight game and stayed undefeated at Truist Park after shutting out the New York Mets 4-0 on Sunday afternoon. This victory gave Atlanta the series win and improved their record to 5-1 against New York.
Wright Gets Out of Trouble Early
After a disastrous outing against the Tampa Bay Rays last week, Braves starter Kyle Wright was looking to get back on track against the Mets. Wright wasn’t untouchable by any means versus New York, but he worked through some high-pressure situations. In the first inning, Wright walked two and allowed a single to load the bases with one out. But Wright didn’t give in under pressure, as he got second baseman Robinson Cano to bounce into an inning-ending double play. He continued to have traffic on the basepaths in the second and third inning, but some timely strikeouts helped keep his scoreless start intact. Although he only worked 3 1/3 innings, he kept New York scoreless and left with the lead.
“He kept pitching,” Braves manager Brian Snitker said. “He never gave in, kept pitching. We made some good plays [and he] made some big pitches. It was an improvement over the last time.”
Atlanta’s Offense Does Just Enough
In the third inning, the Braves offense finally got to rookie starter David Peterson. With the bases loaded and no outs, Peterson proceeded to walk outfielder Ronald Acuña Jr. and Atlanta took a 1-0 lead. Peterson then struck out shortstop Dansby Swanson, but a ground out from first baseman Freddie Freeman gave Atlanta another run. Peterson worked out of the inning only allowing two runs, but a home run in the fourth inning by third baseman Johan Camargo pushed the Braves lead to 3-0. Fast forward to the eighth and an RBI double from Freeman gave the Braves a key insurance run for the ninth inning.
The Braves offense wasn’t as lethal as it was in the first two games of the series, but they did enough to get the win. Atlanta finished the game with four runs on seven hits to go along with a home run and two walks.
Braves Bullpen Continues to Impress
Atlanta’s bullpen continued their impressive work as they put together 5 2/3 scoreless innings while striking out seven batters. Tyler Matzek continued his phenomenal production as he pitched two innings and struck out four batters while earning his first win since April of 2015. Through four appearances this season, Matzek has pitched 5 1/3 innings and has allowed just four hits and one walk. He’s also struck out 9 of the 20 batters he’s faced. Relievers A.J. Minter, Shane Greene, and Mark Melancon followed Matzek with 3 2/3 scoreless innings.
The Braves bullpen now has an ERA of 3.07 and has only issued 10 walks while striking out 52 batters in 44 innings pitched.
“[They’ve] been really, really good,” Snitker said. “We’ve put a lot on them, too. It’s been all hands on deck pretty much the whole time and they’ve responded and been better than you could ever expect.”
Céspedes Goes Missing
Shortly after the game started it was reported that Mets slugger Yoenis Céspedes had not reported to the ballpark and the team was unsuccessful in contacting him. The Mets sent a security team to Céspedes’ room but found it empty. This caused panic around the league, but Céspedes informed the Mets mid-game that he was opting out of the 2020 season due to issues related to COVID-19. According to Mets GM Brodie Van Wagenen, Céspedes had packed up his belongings and left the team hotel without alerting the Mets of his decision.
“We support every player’s right to make this type of decision,” Wagenen said. “It was surprising, without question.”
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