Atlanta Braves' Andrelton Simmons collides with New York Mets catcher Travis d'Arnaud at home plate in the second inning of a baseball game Friday, April 10, 2015, in Atlanta. Simmons was out on the play. (AP Photo/Kevin Liles)
Kevin Liles
April 11, 2015

ATLANTA (AP) Jace Peterson says there's more than one way to move a runner over.

He proved as much against Mets third baseman David Wright.

''I'm thinking I've got to get to third somehow and when he has to come up on the ball and I know I can get around him, I'm going to try to take it,'' Peterson said. ''I was fortunate to get by him. It worked out good.''

Phil Gosselin had a tiebreaking two-run single in the eighth inning, Cameron Maybin homered and the Atlanta Braves won their home opener with a 5-3 victory over the sloppy New York Mets on Friday night.

Atlanta recovered after starting pitcher Eric Stults blew a three-run lead in a game delayed more than an hour by rain at the start.

The Braves, despite a major roster overhaul that pointed to a rebuilding year in Atlanta, are 4-0 to begin a season for the first time since they were 7-0 in 1994.

Chris Johnson led off the eighth with a double off Rafael Montero (0-1), the fourth New York pitcher, and was replaced by pinch-runner Peterson.

As Wright charged toward the infield grass to pick up Andrelton Simmons' grounder, Peterson was able to run behind Wright, avoid his tag attempt and safely reach third.

Simmons made it to second when nobody covered the bag, and both runners scored on Gosselin's single to make it 5-3.

Wright blamed himself for not ignoring Peterson and concentrating instead on throwing out Simmons at first.

''You have a split second to make a decision,'' Wright said, ''and it turned out to be the incorrect one.''

Jim Johnson (1-0) gave up one hit and struck out the side in the eighth.

Jason Grilli earned his third save.

Montero, who got the last out of the seventh and was chased by Gosselin's hit, allowed two hits, two runs, one walk and struck out three in one inning.

Mets shortstop Wilmer Flores made two throwing errors that helped Atlanta jump out to a 3-0 lead.

The Braves went up 2-0 in the first when Maybin homered on Niese's second pitch of the game and Nick Markakis reached on Flores' throwing error and scored from second on Jonny Gomes' RBI single.

''I think we believe what we have here even when everyone else may not,'' Maybin said. ''We're athletic, we've got great chemistry, great group of guys. We believe in each other.''

Atlanta added on in the third. Gomes walked, advanced to third on Chris Johnson's double and scored when Flores bobbled Christian Bethancourt's grounder and made a wild throw to first that pulled Michael Cuddyer off the bag.

Flores took the blame for making two bad throws and for not covering second in the eighth when Simmons reached on a two-base fielder's choice.

''It's not a good feeling when your pitcher is making the right pitches, getting groundballs and you're not making any plays,'' Flores said.

Stults blew the lead in the top of the fourth. Wright hit a two-run homer and Mayberry homered to make it 3-all.

Stults allowed seven hits, three runs, one walk and struck out three in five innings.

Mets starter Jonathon Niese gave up seven hits, two walks and three runs - one earned - and struck out two in five innings.

TRAINER'S ROOM

Mets: With Jenrry Mejia nursing inflammation in the back of his shoulder and Bobby Parnell not expected back until next month from elbow ligament replacement surgery, manager Terry Collins believes RHP Jeurys Familia is ready to seize the closer's role.

''If you're a bullpen guy and you want to be a closer and you get the opportunity, you should run with it because we don't know when they're coming back,'' Collins said.

Braves: Manager Fredi Gonzalez said LHP Mike Minor is still playing long toss but should be getting close in the next few days to throwing off a mound. Minor is on the 15-day disabled list with shoulder inflammation.

UP NEXT

Mets: RHP Dillon Gee, making his first start of the season, is 6-4 with a 2.79 ERA in 14 starts against Atlanta, and he's been even better at Turner Field with a 3-1 record and 2.23 ERA in six starts.

Braves: RHP Julio Teheran, coming off a 2-1 win in the opener at Miami on Monday, is 3-2 with a 3.42 ERA in eight career games - seven starts- against the Mets.

You May Like