R.A. Dickey out-dueled Matt Harvey again, adding another former teammate besides Daniel Murphy who’s making a mockery of the Mets. The 42 year-old knuckleballer gave up three runs on four hits with a flurry of floaters that were far more effective than Harvey’s fastballs.
Sunday night was really bad déjà vu for Harvey, who surrendered eight hits in 5 1/3 innings, allowing six runs against the Braves for the second time in five days. With no definite date of Noah Syndergaard’s return, there is no sugar coating the Mets pitching problems. Their starting rotation has fallen and can’t get up, and their bullpen is barely breathing on life support.
Jay Bruce gave at the office big time, putting the Mets on the board with a two run blast in the first, then took Matt Wisler grand slam deep in the top of the ninth to cut the deficit to two. The agony of defeat seemed to be New York’s destiny, though, when Jim Johnson replaced Wisler and got Neil Walker to strike out swinging for the final out.
Braves first baseman Freddie Freeman continues to be a Nightmare on Elm Street for NY; Shades of a Chipper Jones clone, tying the game in the bottom of the first with a 422-foot two-run shot that landed in the right field upper deck. Outfielder Nick Markakis made some highlight reel run saving grabs in right field to go along with his 1-for-4 night at the plate, and Ender Inciarte pounded Mets pitching, producing his first three-hit game of the season.