Kyle Wright struggled early and the Atlanta Braves squandered some opportunities late in a 7-3 loss to the New York Mets Wednesday night.
Wright’s return to the rotation did not go well as he again struggled to locate his pitches. Jeff McNeil flew out to begin the game but then Francisco Lindor worked a walk and then advanced to third on a double by Michael Conforto. Wright jumped ahead of Pete Alonso 0-2 but was unable to put him away. His 1-2 pitch bounced past William Contreras allowing Lindor to come home with the Mets’ first run. Alonso walked before Dominic Smith grounded to Albies at second, Conforto scored on the play to make it 2-0.
Wright again found himself in trouble in the second when Luis Guillorme hit a one out double. Wright struck out pitcher Tylor Megill for the second out but McNeil followed with a single that scored Guillorme to extend the lead to 3-0. Lindor followed with a two-run shot to right to push the lead to 5-0.
It certainly wasn’t the start that Wright was looking for and you have to wonder where he goes from here. He would exit after just two innings having allowed four hits, three walks and five runs. Wright threw 55 pitches with just 29 going for strikes.
Josh Tomlin held the Mets scoreless in the third and the fourth and the Braves finally got on the board in the fifth. Ehire Adrianza walked to begin the inning and then moved to second on a ground out by Contreras. Ender Inciarte then connected for his second home run of the season to put Atlanta on the board 5-2.
On the board courtesy of @enderinciartem #HyundaiHighlight | #ForTheA pic.twitter.com/kat1TPjPEK— Atlanta Braves (@Braves) June 24, 2021
Megill then walked Tomlin and was replaced by righty Miguel Castro. Dansby Swanson just missed a home run to left and then hit a bullet to Guillorme at third that he turned into a fielder’s choice. Swanson stole second and then moved over to third on an infield single by Freddie Freeman. Castro then walked Ozzie Albies to load the bases but Abraham Almonte grounded out to squander the opportunity.
Atlanta crept closer in the sixth as Austin Riley greeted Corey Oswalt with a lead off double. Adrianza followed with a single back to center that scored Riley to cut the deficit to 5-3.
Tyler Matzek worked a scoreless sixth but allowed a leadoff single to Conforto in the seventh before giving way to Chris Martin. Martin was seeing his first action since June 15 and was greeted by Alonso who singled sharply to center. Martin struck out Smith for the first out but then gave up a run-scoring single to James McCann that pushed the lead back to 6-3. Martin got out of it with no further damage as Kevin Pillar grounded into a 6-4-3 double play to end the frame.
The Braves threatened again in the eighth but came away empty handed. Oswalt struck out Almonte but then gave up another double to Riley. After a walk to Adrianza, Luis Rojas would summon Edwin Diaz from the bullpen to try and record a multi-inning save. Pablo Sandoval pinch hit for Contreras and was called out on strikes but replay showed that he did not swing. Inciarte flew out to left to end the inning.
Shane Greene took over on the mound in the ninth and his struggles continued. Guillorme worked a leadoff walk. Greene struck out Billy McKinney for the first out but then allowed back-to-back singles to McNeil and Lindor. Guillorme scored on the play to extend the lead to 7-3. Greene recovered to strike out Conforto and then got Alonso to pop out to end the inning.
Diaz stayed in to work the ninth and made quick work of Kevan Smith and Swanson before walking Freeman. However, Albies lined out to Alonso to end the game.
With the loss, Atlanta falls to 35-38 on the season and are back where they started, five games back of the NL East lead. They will now head to Cincinnati where they will begin a four-game series against the Reds Thursday.