July 7, 2014: Tejada's Single in 11th Beats Braves

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Date: July 7, 2014
Mets starter: Daisuke Matsuzaka
Mets: 4
Braves: 3
Winning pitcher: Carlos Torres
Key player(s): David Wright, Curtis Granderson, Ruben Tejada
Key play: Wright’s and Granderson’s home runs, Tejada’s single

The Mets faced the Braves on a Monday night at Citi Field. The teams played the opener of a four-game series. Ruben Tejada hit a run-scoring single in the 11th inning for a 4-3 Mets win over Atlanta.

Mets’ starter Daisuke Matsuzaka pitched a scoreless top of the first. The Braves’ Mike Minor set down the side in order in the bottom half and Chris Johnson drew a walk to lead off the top of the second. Tommy LaStella singled and Christian Bethancourt hit a force play ground ball to third baseman David Wright. Matsuzaka retired Minor on a line drive to left fielder Chris Young, who threw to second baseman Daniel Murphy for an out on LaStella and an inning-ending double play. Eric Campbell walked to lead off the bottom half. Juan Lagares went down on strikes and Chris Young popped out to second baseman LaStella. Travis d'Arnaud hit a double to score Campbell for a 1-0 Mets lead. Minor then walked Tejada intentionally and threw a called third strike past Matsuzaka to end the inning.

Andrelton Simmons got a one-out single in the top of the third. Freddie Freeman singled and Matsuzaka retired Justin Upton and Jason Heyward on consecutive fly balls to Chris Young that closed out the inning. With two outs in the bottom half, Wright homered to extend the Mets’ lead to 2-0. Campbell flied out to right fielder Heyward to end the inning and Matsuzaka surrendered only a walk to Bethancourt in the top of the fourth. Minor then hurled a perfect bottom half.

Matsuzaka and Minor each pitched scoreless ball from the fifth inning to the seventh. Freeman doubled against Mets’ reliever Vic Black with one out in the top of the eighth. Justin Upton grounded out to shortstop Tejada to advance Freeman to third base. With New York’s Josh Edgin on the mound facing Heyward, Freeman came home on a wild pitch. Heyward singled and came around to score on Johnson’s double against the Mets’ Jenrry Mejia. LaStella was given an intentional walk and Bethancourt hit a single to plate Johnson, giving the Braves a 3-2 lead. On the play, LaStella was out via a relay throw by first baseman Campbell to Wright to finish off the inning.

Atlanta reliever Luis Avilan retired Tejada on a grounder to third baseman Johnson to open the bottom of the eighth. Pinch-hitter Eric Young grounded out to shortstop Andrelton Simmons and a home run by Curtis Granderson tied the game at 3-3. Murphy singled and the Braves’ Jordan Walden fanned Wright for the inning’s third out. Mejia pitched a scoreless top of the ninth and the Mets loaded the bases with two outs against Atlanta’s Shae Simmons in the bottom half. Shae Simmons then got Eric Young to hit a force play grounder to first baseman Freeman, ending the inning and sending the game onward.

Mets’ reliever Carlos Torres retired the side in order in the top of the 10th. Shae Simmons and the Braves’ Anthony Varvaro combined for a scoreless bottom half and Torres yielded just a single to B. J. Upton in the top of the 11th. Lagares hit a double with one out in the bottom of the inning. Duda was given an intentional walk and Varvaro retired d’Arnaud on a fly ball to center fielder B. J. Upton, after which Lagares moved to third base. Tejada delivered a single to bring home Lagares with the winning run. The Mets had an exciting victory to start the series.