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Aug 29, 12:32 AM EDT

Niese keeps Mets close, but falls to Braves

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NEW YORK (AP) -- Jonathon Niese extended his run of fine starts in August by pitching into the eighth inning Thursday night. Too bad for the Mets' left-hander that Mike Minor did the same for Atlanta.

Niese gave up a double and single to Minor, and the Braves beat New York 6-1.

Niese (7-10) allowed three runs and nine hits in 7 1-3 innings.

"For the majority of it, I was able to keep the ball down all night," Niese said. "That last inning I left the ball up. Minor is a good hitter and if you leave a ball up, he's going to get a pretty good swing on it. He's dangerous."

Minor (6-8) was perfect for four innings before Lucas Duda led off the fifth with a single that just barely touched the glove of a leaping Andrelton Simmons.

The Mets did not have a runner in scoring position until Travis d'Arnaud opened the eighth with a double. Eric Campbell followed with an RBI single, ending Minor's night.

"Any day you face the Braves, you're going to face a pretty good pitcher," Mets third baseman David Wright said. "He threw a lot of fastballs - some were straight, some cut and some sank. His fastball command was excellent."

Wright was 0 for 4 in his return to the lineup after missing two games with a muscle spasm on the right side of his neck.

The Mets could only generate four hits against Minor and a pair of relievers. The Mets only had six runs in the three-game series against Atlanta.

"You have to start seeing consistent at-bats, that's how you're going to start scoring runs," Mets manager Terry Collins said. "We're going pretty quietly right now and we got to change that."

Pinch-hitter Ryan Doumit homered in a three-run ninth off Daisuke Matsuzaka, who came off the disabled list.


Braves: LHP Jonny Venters has been shut down for the remainder of the year after a visit with Dr. James Andrews revealed a tear in his elbow. Venters was rehabbing following his second Tommy John reconstructive surgery.

Mets: Prior to the game, the Mets placed RHP Vic Black on the 15-day DL with a herniated disc in his neck. ... After the game, the team placed 2B Daniel Murphy on the 15-day DL with a strained right calf and promoted infielder Dilson Herrera from Binghamton.


Mets: Philadelphia will visit for a three-game series starting Friday night. RHP Jacob deGrom (6-6, 3.13) pitches against Phillies RHP David Buchanan (6-7, 4.21) in a matchup of rookie pitchers. On May 31, deGrom faced the Phillies at Citizens Bank Ballpark, giving up three runs and striking out 11 over 6 1-3 innings in a no-decision. The Mets handed Buchanan his first major league loss on May 29 and defeated the rookie a second time on Aug. 11.


Prior to the game, the Mets presented RHP Jacob deGrom with his National League Rookie of the Month Award for July after the rookie went 4-1 with a 1.39 ERA in five starts.


The Mets failed to hit a home run ending their streak at eight games.

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