Sunday, August 7, 2011

Turning On Two: Turner Leads Mets Past Braves 11-7

The 2011 New York Mets can be best associated with Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. As the Mets sit at .500 on August 7th at 56-56, the team's power is about as reliable as an Oliver Perez outing from 2010. Coming into the night with only 2 home runs on the year, Justin Turner doubled his total by blasting 2 home runs and driving in 4 runs, capping off an impressive power surge from the power(and Beltran) deprived Mets as they defeated the Atlanta Braves 11-7 to move back within 8 games of the Wild Card.

Jonathan Niese(11-8, 4.12 ERA) picked up his 11th win of the year but allowed 5 runs on 10 hits in 5 innings. While Niese was able to put the Braves away for the first 2 innings, Niese allowed 5 runs in the 3rd inning before settling down to pitch two scoreless frames in the 4th and 5th. The bullpen was able to hold down the fort for Niese, with Pedro Beato, Tim Byrdak, Bobby Parnell and Manny Acosta combining for 4 innings of solid relief work.

Boiling Points:
  • After struggling the past several nights at the plate, Jose Reyes was able to continue to the offensive onslaught by the Mets tonight, contributing 2 hits and driving in Scott Hairston with an RBI single.
  • Jason Bay hits his second home run of the home stand, a 2 run shot to left field to cut the Mets deficit to 5-4 in the 4th inning. Josh Thole proceeded to tie the game with a solo shot, his second of the year.
  • Angel Pagan showed signs of bouncing back, contributing 3 hits and raising his average to .247.
  • Tommy Hanson struggled mightily for the Wild Card leading Braves, allowing 7 runs on 8 hits in 3 1/3 innings. Atlanta's bullpen didn't fare much better, allowing 4 more runs along the way.
  • Keith Hernandez had talked about Josh Thole's struggles at the plate last night during the series opener against the Atlanta Braves and how Thole cooled down after hitting well over .300 in June due to pitchers making adjustments. Thole appeared to have made adjustments, connecting for a season high 3 hits.
The New York Mets will look to keep their season alive tomorrow afternoon as they face the Atlanta Braves in the rubber match of their 3 game series at 1:10 PM ET.