Braves get sloppy in field, lose to Mets 4-3 in 14

Published on NewsOK Modified: April 20, 2014 at 7:02 pm •  Published: April 20, 2014
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NEW YORK (AP) — With a little more help from his defense, David Hale could have dominated. Instead, the Atlanta Braves fumbled away a chance for a road sweep against an NL East rival.

Slumping newcomer Curtis Granderson hit a sacrifice fly in the 14th inning and the New York Mets outlasted Atlanta 4-3 on Sunday to prevent a three-game whitewash.

"You play that long you want to win, obviously. So yeah, that's rough, but it's part of it," left fielder Justin Upton said. "Something had to give and it gave their way. Nothing you can do about it."

David Wright had four hits and New York took advantage of three early errors by Atlanta, which had won seven of eight.

"You want to go out and play good defense every day and when we don't, obviously, we take that to heart," said Upton, who botched a flyball in the first. "It's tough to go out and be perfect every day."

Hale wriggled out of bases-loaded jams in the second and sixth — both after errors by second baseman Dan Uggla. The rookie was making his second straight start against the Mets and pitching for the first time in 10 days because his scheduled outing Tuesday in Philadelphia was rained out.

Hale was long gone when Kirk Nieuwenhuis drew a leadoff walk from Gus Schlosser (0-1) and advanced on Ruben Tejada's sacrifice bunt. Eric Young Jr. was intentionally walked to bring up Granderson, hitless in his last 16 at-bats and stuck in a 4-for-44 slide that's dropped his average to .127.

"In that situation, that was the right thing to do," Schlosser said.

The runners moved up on a wild pitch, and Granderson lifted the next delivery into medium left field. Nieuwenhuis slid home ahead of Upton's throw.

"Terrible pitch. Elevated. That's what he's trying to do right there, and I let him do it," Schlosser said. "It's a hard pill to swallow."

Granderson went 0 for 6 with an error and was booed all afternoon. But he turned those jeers to cheers at the end of a long day.

Mets starter Zack Wheeler tossed six innings against his hometown team before he was pulled for a pinch hitter in a game that lasted 4 hours, 37 minutes.