Atlanta Braves third baseman Chris Johnson (23) hits a three-run home run against the New York Mets during the tenth inning of a game at Citi Field. (Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports)
NEW YORK — Chris Johnson hit a three-run homer in the 10th inning as the Atlanta Braves rallied to defeat the New York Mets 4-1 in the finale of a two-game series on Wednesday afternoon at Citi Field.
Atlanta put runners at first and second with two outs in the 10th on back-to-back broken-bat singles by Andrelton Simmons and Freddie Freeman. Greg Burke, the Mets’ sixth pitcher of the game, gave up the home run to left field on his first pitch to Johnson, who hit his 10th home run of the season.
Braves reliever Luis Avilan picked up the win, improving to 5-0, and closer Craig Kimbrel posted his 40th save. Mets reliever Scott Atchinson (0-5) was the loser.
Mets starter Jonathon Niese cruised through five scoreless innings, allowing just two hits. He quickly got the first two outs of the sixth but then hit Jason Heyward in the right jaw with a fastball.
After a brief delay, Heyward was replaced by Jordan Schafer, who scored on a single to center by Freeman after a single up the middle by Simmons to tie the score at 1.
Heyward was helped off the field and examined by Mets doctors. He was taken to an area hospital for X-rays and further evaluation.
Niese waked Gerald Laird to open the seventh and Joey Terdoslavich singled to right, putting Braves runners at second and third with no outs. But B.J. Upton grounded out and Paul Janish struck out on an attempted bunt. Pinch-hitter Philip Gosselin was intentionally walked to load the bases and Niese struck out Schafer to get out of the jam.
In his third appearance against the Mets, Alex Wood gave up one earned run and six hits, striking out four with two walks in six innings for the no-decision.
Niese gave up one earned run and five hits, striking out nine and walking three in seven innings.
The Mets threatened to win the game in the ninth when Justin Turner looped a one-out double to left field and reached third on a groundout to second by Wilmer Flores. Avilan intentionally walked John Buck and then Travis D’Arnaud, pinch-hitting for closer LaTroy Hawkins, worked for a walk to load the bases.
Juan Lagares, who doubled in the fifth, grounded into a fielder’s choice up the middle to end the threat and send the game into extra innings. It was the Mets’ 17th extra-inning game of the year and the 14th for the Braves.
First baseman Josh Satin tied a club record by reaching base safely in his 29th consecutive game with his second career home run in the fourth inning.
Satin, who singled in the second, tied Steve Henderson’s 1977 record. Satin then led off the fourth by taking Wood’s 1-1 pitch over the wall in left field.
Niese pitched three no-hit innings before giving up a one-out ingle to left by Simmons in the fourth. Simmons tried to stretch it into a double but was thrown out at second.
NOTES: Mets RHP Jeremy Hefner is seeking a second opinion on his pitching elbow but said he’ll probably need season-ending Tommy John surgery. Hefner, who has a partial of his MCL and bone spurs in his right elbow, will meet with Dr. James Andrews next Monday. “I think I wasn’t leading on as much as I was because I wanted to pitch, I wanted to play. I was doing well,” Hefner said. “Back when I was doing well, I was hurting then, too. When I started to struggle, I was hurting the team so that was the decision to eventually say something.”… Braves OF Justin Upton missed his second straight game with a left upper back strain. He is listed as day to day.