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A turnaround at Turner

A turnaround at Turner
Mets 4

Braves 3 The Mets got back on track at a stadium that no longer seems so intimidating.

Livan Hernandez took a scoreless effort into the seventh inning and David Wright and Ramon Castro contributed RBI doubles as the Mets beat the Braves, 4-3, last night at Turner Field.

There were some tense moment, however, s in the bottom of the ninth. Carlos Delgado, who had driven in two runs in the top of the inning to give the Mets and closer Francisco Rodriguez a three-run cushion, dropped a routine pop fly that led to two Atlanta runs.

But K-Rod, after giving up an RBI single immediately after Delgado's error, got Chipper Jones to fly to right to end the game with the tying run at third.

The Mets swept the two-game series at their one-time annual burial ground to move to within a game of .500 entering another meeting with the Phillies, and a seeming mismatch between Johan Santana and Chan Ho Park.

Bobby Parnell, a starter in the minor leagues, had been called upon only twice in his professional career to enter a game with a runner on base. But the hard-throwing rookie has demonstrated he is ready for that challenge while serving as the primary seventh-inning reliever.

So Jerry Manuel summoned Parnell to protect a 2-0 lead last night after Hernandez allowed a pair of Braves to reach base with one out in the seventh.

Parnell struck out pinch hitter Greg Norton looking, but pinch hitter Martin Prado followed with an RBI double to left field. Still, Parnell escaped the inning with the Mets (12-13) maintaining a one-run lead. With two runners in scoring position, Parnell retired Omar Infante on a hard grounder to shortstop, although there was an anxious moment as the ball rolled up Jose Reyes' arm before he recovered and threw to first base.

Carlos Beltran and Wright, who combined for three homers and six RBI in Monday's win, kept the ball in the ballpark last night while providing key contributions.

Beltran opened the third inning with a single off Kenshin Kawakami (1-4) to extend his hitting streak to a career-high 16 games, then stole second. Wright's one-out double to the left-field corner drove him in as the Mets struck first. Wright scored and the Mets took a 2-0 lead when Castro, starting his third straight game, doubled down the first-base line with two out.

Beltran has now reached base in each of the Mets' first 25 games, surpassing Kevin McReynolds' 1989 streak for the second-longest in franchise history to open a season. John Olerud, who reached base in the first 30 games of the '99 season, owns the team record.

Castro, who last week had sat as Omir Santos handled the bulk of the catching duty, matched a career high with three hits.

Meanwhile, Hernandez (2-1) looked spry in a 75-pitch effort while limiting the Braves to seven hits and two walks in 6 1/3 innings.

After Ryan Church was unable to make a sliding catch on No. 8 hitter David Ross' shot to right field, which turned the sinking liner into a double in the third inning, Kawakami tried to bunt Ross to third base. Hernandez pounced off the mound and threw to Wright, who tag out Ross.

The Braves (11-15) still loaded the bases that inning with ensuing singles by Infante and Yunel Escobar. But Hernandez had good fortune, too. Jones lined out to Luis Castillo, who doubled a retreating Infante off second base.

Author:Fox Sports
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Added: May 7, 2009

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