(Sports Network) - Having begun their critical road trip with a victory, the Atlanta Braves will try to make it two wins in a row this afternoon when they continue a three-game series with the New York Mets at Citi Field.
The Braves are one of the top home teams in baseball as evidenced with a 52-23 mark as the host, but were coming off a home series loss to the Nationals and had just a 31-41 road record heading into the opener of a nine-game swing that kicked off last night.
Atlanta was able to come through with a 6-4 victory thanks to a six-run fourth inning, helped along by a Mets error, snapping a two-game slide to up their National League Wild Card lead to 1 1/2 games over the Padres. The Braves also stayed three games back of the Phillies for first place in the NL East.
New York held an early lead, but Jason Heyward hit a three-run homer off Mets starter Jon Niese to cap the big sixth and Omar Infante had a two-run double in the frame, which featured a throwing error by David Wright to make all the runs unearned.
"It's great to be able to bounce back after being down 3-0. Niese had it going pretty well there in the first few innings. We had to put up one big inning, that's all it took. It says a lot about our team. We were patient and hung in there," Heyward said.
Lucas Duda hit his first career home run in the loss, which snapped the Mets' four-game winning streak and dropped them to 5-3 on a 10-game homestand.
"It was a pretty cool feeling, off a tough pitcher Tommy Hanson. He's got great stuff. I was just looking to hit the ball hard, and [it] left the yard," Duda said.
The Braves hope that Tim Hudson can halt a three-start losing streak today that has seen him yield 13 earned runs over 18 1/3 innings of work.
Hudson turned in his worst outing of the season on Sunday versus the Cardinals, allowing six runs on nine hits over just five innings to fall to 15-8 with a 2.62 earned run average in 30 starts. Atlanta has also scored just five runs over his losing streak.
The 35-year-old right-hander's skid started with a loss to the Mets on Sept. 2 as he gave up four runs -- three earned -- over seven frames of work. He still fell to 12-6 with a 3.46 ERA in his career against New York.
Dillon Gee has begun his major league career with 13 innings of one-run ball and the 24-year-old Mets starter hopes to stay on a roll with his third outing of the season today.
Gee joined New York's rotation on Sept. 7 and beat Washington with seven innings of one-run ball before holding Pittsburgh to just five hits and four walks over six scoreless innings in his home debut on Monday. The 24-year-old got a no-decision in his team's 1-0 victory even though he wasn't happy with his outing afterwards.
"I was definitely upset that I didn't feel that good tonight, but it's definitely a positive step in the right direction that I can go out there without my best stuff and figure out a way to get some people out," said Gee.
Atlanta has won five of its last six over New York and leads the season series, 9-7.