Starting pitcher Jonathon Niese, who entered the game with a 4-2 record and a 3.69 ERA, allowed four runs on six hits and a walk to earn the loss. He gave up a home run -- on a mistake-pitch hanging curveball -- to Reds right fielder Jay Bruce in the top of the first, a three-run shot that the Mets could never recover from. The home run was Bruce's 15th of the season.
Unlike Friday, the Mets responded quickly thanks to David Wright's RBI double, which sent second baseman Daniel Murphy home after he got on with a two-bagger.
But in the top of the fourth inning, Niese plunked Bruce, and he eventually came around to score after two consecutive singles, the RBI going to left fielder Ryan Ludwick. For the second straight night, New York was unable to get enough good swings on Reds pitching. Starter Homer Bailey went eight innings, giving up the run on six hits. The Mets had chances to cash in, but they went 2-for-12 with runners in scoring position.
The loss drops New York to 35-31 (19-14 at home), while the Reds improved to 37-27. The Mets will try to avoid a series sweep Sunday afternoon at 1:10 p.m. EST. Chris Young (1-0, 3.38 ERA) will take the mound against Johnny Cueto (7-3, 2.46 ERA).
See Amazin' Avenue for complete discussion and analysis of the Mets.