Late Rally Falls Short As Mets Sweep Braves

Apr 08, 2012; Flushing, NY,USA; New York Mets starting pitcher Jonathon Niese (49) delivers a pitch during the first inning against the Atlanta Braves at Citi Field. Mandatory Credit: Anthony Gruppuso-US PRESSWIRE

Jon Niese held the Braves hitless into the seventh inning and the Mets bullpen withstood a late-inning rally to secure a 7-5 win and a sweep.

Both Niese and Braves starter Mike Minor looked impressive early. Niese walked three in the first two innings, but was otherwise dominant. Minor allowed a first-inning run following a leadoff double by Ruben Tejada, one of his four hits in the game.

Minor allowed a second run in the fourth following another leadoff double, this time by Daniel Murphy. A pair of walks loaded the bases with no outs before Jason Bay hit a sacrifice fly into a double play. Murphy struck again in the fifth, scoring two with a two-out double to left.

Minor departed the game with two on and no one out in the sixth. Cristhian Martinez was brought in the stop the bleeding, but surrendered Scott Hairston's RBI double and Tejada's two-out, two-run double, his second double of the game and pushing the score to 7-0.

The Braves would not be denied, though, as they fought to come back against Niese and the Mets. Following a leadoff walk to Dan Uggla, Freddie Freeman smacked the first Braves hit of the game. On a fly ball by Matt Diaz, Lucas Duda lost the ball in the sun, allowing Uggla to score. Jason Heyward crushed the next pitch for a two-run double and that meant the end of the day for Niese.

Jack Wilson's sacrifice fly cut the lead to 7-4 and Brian McCann belted his first home run of the season to trim the lead to two, but the Braves went down in order in the ninth.

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