Jonathon Niese threw seven innings of one-run baseball, and Lucas Duda hit a three-run homer as the New York Mets opened their series in Atlanta with a 3-1 victory over the Braves on Friday night. Niese cruised through his seven innings, yielding only four hits and three walks. Freddie Freeman's solo home run in the bottom of the fourth was the only run of the game for Atlanta, who had only two base runners reach second base. It was Niese's eighth straight quality start going back to August 7th at Miami. Bobby Parnell pitched the ninth for the save.
Tim Hudson was Niese's equal for much of the game, allowing only three hits over his first six innings. Hudson's fortunes changed in the top of the seventh. David Murphy led off with a double and, after a strikeout, Ike Davis drew an intentional walk. Hudson got Scott Hairston to strikeout for the second out, but Duda put a pitch over the right field wall to give the Mets the 3-1 lead.
The two teams face off again Saturday for a 7:10 tilt at Turner Field. Chris Young (4-8, 4.21 ERA) takes the hill for New York against southpaw Mike Minor (10-10, 4.27) for Atlanta.