Sports

David Peterson, Francisco Lindor power Mets over Braves

David Peterson, Francisco Lindor power Mets over Braves

After nearly coming back from an eight-point deficit on Friday-evening, the Mets made it much easier for themselves to start their doubleheader on Saturday.

Of course it helps if Francisco Lindor and David Peterson have the kind of games they did.

The Mets took the lead in the first inning, continued to extend it, and got a strong start from Peterson to take an 8-5 win over the Braves in Game 1 of the twin bill at Citi Field.

Lindor powered the attack and continued to swing a hot bat by going 3-for-4 with three RBI’s and two runs scored. The shortstop, who also had another fine day with his glove, extended his on-base streak to 13 games while hitting .328 with a .968 OPS in 31 games since early July.

“It’s like mining gold,” said manager Buck Showalter. “You take a piece of gold and put it there. You take the stone, you put it here and you sift some more. If you have enough gold nuggets, you can play in October. Lindor is a nugget.’

Francisco Lindor delivers a two-run double in the sixth inning.
Jason Szenes

Lindor’s big game led to a lineup that collected 13 hits and went 7-for-14 with runners in scoring position.

That was enough support for Peterson and four Mets reliezers. On a day when the bullpen was short, Peterson worked around some early traffic to deliver 5 ¹/₃ scoreless innings — earning him a standing ovation as he walked off the mound in the sixth inning. His reward was to return to Triple-A Syracuse after the game so the Mets could call in a fresh arm for the nightcap.

Despite leading 8-2 going into the ninth, the Mets were forced to bring in Edwin Diaz with two on and one out after the Braves closed in 8-4 against Yoan Lopez. But Diaz only needed seven pitches to secure his 25th save.

David Peterson pitching during the Mets' victory over the Braves on Saturday.
David Peterson pitching during the Mets’ victory over the Braves on Saturday.
Jason Szenes

With the win, the Mets (68-39) improved to 30-9 after a loss and recaptured a 4 ¹/₂ game lead over the Braves (64-44) atop the NL East en route to the nightcap.

“The most important thing is that we win games,” Lindor said. “It doesn’t matter who’s on the other side. You have to go out and do it.”

After Peterson worked out of a basesloaded jam in the top of the first inning, the Mets jumped on takeover of Braves trade deadline Jake Odorizzi for a 2-0 lead in the bottom of the inning.

Starling Marte started the rally when he took a 93 mph fastball from his left forearm, though he stayed in the game. Lindor, Pete Alonso and Daniel Vogelbach then followed with three consecutive singles, the last two of which each led to a run to give the Mets the lead.

Daniel Vogelbach connects on an RBI single in the first inning.
Daniel Vogelbach connects on an RBI single in the first inning.
Jason Szenes

Lindor led off the third inning with a single and later finished in second on an erroneous pickoff attempt by Odorizzi with two outs. Jeff McNeil then made Odorizzi pay by setting up a single into right field to make it 3-0.

In the sixth inning, Lindor came within inches of a three-run homer, but his flyout to dead center hit the top of the wall, settling for a two-run double and leading 5-0.

The Braves eventually pushed a few runs over in the seventh inning off Seth Lugo and Adam Ottavino, but the Mets came right back into the bottom of the frame with an answer. James McCann and Starling Marte connected for RBI-singles before Lindor hit a sacrifice fly to give the Mets an 8-2 lead.

“We talk about grinding at bats and that’s how we want to be known,” Lindor said. “A team that grinds, pitch after pitch and doesn’t give up, whatever the score.”