NL East Wrap: Mets blank Braves; Marlins fall


Saturday, June 4, 2011
Posted: 10:24 p.m.

The Associated Press

Mets 5, Braves 0


NEW YORK -- Dillon Gee outpitched Jair Jurrjens to remain unbeaten this season and Jose Reyes hit a bases-loaded triple, leading the New York Mets past the Atlanta Braves 5-0 on Saturday night.

Pinch-hitter Jason Pridie snapped a scoreless tie with an RBI single in the seventh and the Mets took advantage of an error by shortstop Alex Gonzalez to score five times in the inning.

New York's struggling bullpen finally preserved a lead, too, with Pedro Beato and Tim Byrdak combining for two perfect innings to close it out.

The Mets set an unwanted major league record Friday night: Their last six home losses have all come in games in which they led in the seventh inning. The bullpen had a 10.57 ERA over the previous 12 games.

Gee (6-0) won his fourth straight start, needing only 85 pitches to get through seven innings before he was lifted for a pinch-hitter. The cool-as-a-cucumber rookie allowed four hits and walked two while finishing with a pair of strikeouts.

He had to be sharp in his matchup with Jurrjens, the National League pitcher of the month for May. The two pitchers came in with the top winning percentages in the league.

New York has won all eight of Gee's starts this season, making him the only pitcher who has made at least five starts without his team losing any of them.

Jurrjens (7-2) was cruising along until his defense let him down in the seventh.

Brewers 3, Marlins 2


MIAMI -- Prince Fielder homered and Yuniesky Betancourt hit a tiebreaking RBI double in Milwaukee's two-run seventh inning, helping the Brewers beat the Florida Marlins 3-2 on Saturday night.

Yovani Gallardo pitched six effective innings to win his sixth consecutive start and Milwaukee posted back-to-back wins in South Florida for the first time since April 10-11, 2007. The Brewers began the day with the fewest road wins in the National League, but improved to 11-19 away from Miller Park.

John Axford pitched the ninth for his 15th save in 17 opportunities. He struck out Emilio Bonifacio with a runner on third to end the game.

The Brewers trailed 2-1 before Fielder hit his 13th homer with one out in the seventh. The burly first baseman sent Chris Volstad's 0-1 pitch into the seats in left-center.

Casey McGehee then flied out before Jonathan Lucroy singled off shortstop Bonifacio's glove. Betancourt followed with an RBI double off the wall in left-center.

Volstad (2-5) gave up six hits, struck out four and walked one in seven innings. He dropped to 0-4 with a 5.87 ERA in his last seven starts.

Gaby Sanchez hit a two-out RBI single in the first and the Marlins pushed across an unearned run in the sixth to take a 2-1 lead.

Diamondbacks 2, Nationals 0


PHOENIX -- Joe Saunders escaped two early jams to go seven innings in a combined four-hitter, lifting the Arizona Diamondbacks to a 2-0 win over the Washington Nationals Saturday night.

Stephen Drew and Xavier Nady drove in runs with extra-base hits off Livan Hernandez (3-7), which was more than enough for Saunders (3-5). The left-hander retired the final 14 batters and held the Nationals to two hits, a night after Josh Collmenter limited them to three in seven scoreless innings.

David Hernandez got through a tough spot in the eighth inning and J.J. Putz bounced back from his first blown save to close out Arizona's 18th win in 22 games.

Washington was shut out in consecutive games for the second time in a month despite holding Arizona to four hits.

Saunders had a miserable start to the season, going 0-5 with a 5.02 ERA his first nine starts. He finally broke through with a win at Colorado on May 24 and was good enough in his last start, allowing four runs on seven hits in six innings in a 15-4 win over Florida.

Saunders found himself in a sticky spot right off the bat against Washington, facing first and third with one out. He worked out of it, striking out Michael Morse then getting Wilson Ramos on a lazy flyout with the bases loaded.

Saunders did it again in the third inning, this time by striking out Morse and getting Danny Espinosa on a nubber to the mound. He got into a nice groove after that, retiring the next 12 batters before being lifted for a pinch hitter in the bottom of the seventh with a 2-0 lead.

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