Morning Briefing: Braves keep tormenting Mets

ATLANTA -- With the New York Mets playing the Atlanta Braves seven times in a nine-game span, this looked like a stretch during which the Amazin’s could pad their win total.

Instead, it has turned into an utter disaster.

Swept last weekend at Citi Field by the Braves, the Mets lost their fourth straight meeting against Atlanta on Thursday as the teams relocated to Turner Field.

Now, Steven Matz looks to get the Mets back on track Friday. Matz (7-3, 2.74 ERA) opposes right-hander Aaron Blair (0-4, 7.19) at 7:35 p.m. ET.

Matz felt elbow tightness during his last start, but the Mets expect him to pitch without issue.


  • Addison Reed surrendered a two-run homer to Adonis Garcia in the eighth inning and the Braves rallied for a 4-3 win against the Mets on Thursday. Michael Conforto had thrown out Emilio Bonifacio on a would-be game-tying sacrifice fly in the seventh inning, but those heroics went for naught. Conforto bruised his left knee making a catch against a side wall to end the fourth inning. Neil Walker had two RBIs and Alejandro De Aza snapped an 0-for-20 skid with an RBI double in the loss. Matt Harvey allowed two runs on eight hits in six innings in a no-decision and again was displeased with his mechanics. Read game recaps in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Post, Daily News, Times, Newsday, Record and at NJ.com and MLB.com.

  • Noah Syndergaard remains on track to make Monday’s start against the Washington Nationals despite being prescribed anti-inflammatory medication on Wednesday. After rejoining the Mets, Syndergaard speculated that his high workload may be contributing to elbow flare-ups. Read more in Newsday.

  • Jose Reyes is poised to become a free agent on Saturday, and the Mets are interested. Reyes likely would begin with a minor league stint to get acclimated to third base and other infield positions should he sign with the Mets. He likely would be used in a utility role. Reyes would only cost a prorated portion of the $507,500 MLB minimum. Read more in the Post, Daily News and Newsday.

  • Terry Collins apologized for referring to Mets PR man Jay Horwitz as a “puppy dog” and treating him disrespectfully. Read more in the Post, Daily News and at NJ.com.

  • Yoenis Cespedes said he could have played Thursday. He received a cortisone injection in his sprained left wrist a day earlier. Cespedes is expected to start on Friday in center field. Read more at NJ.com.

  • Highly regarded shortstop prospect Amed Rosario has been promoted to Double-A Binghamton. The Mets view Rosario as untouchable in trades, columnist Joel Sherman writes in the Post.

  • Derrik Gibson had four hits and two RBIs, but Binghamton’s losing streak grew to six games with a 9-6 loss to Altoona. Andrew Church tossed a complete game in St. Lucie’s 3-2 loss to Palm Beach. Joe Shaw allowed five runs in five innings and Augusta beat Columbia, 6-3. Thomas Szapucki struck out 13 in six scoreless innings, but Elizabethton rallied for a 4-3 win against Kingsport in their Appalachian League opener. Harol Gonzalez took a no-hit bid into the seventh inning, but Connecticut beat Brooklyn, 3-2. Read the full minor-league recap here.

  • The Mets say Bartolo Colon is on track to start Sunday’s series finale against the Braves despite suffering a bruised right thumb in his last start. Colon was away from the team Thursday to attend a son’s graduation in New Jersey.

  • The Mets’ private workout with Cuban infielder Yulieski Gourriel will be held sometime next week, assistant general manager John Ricco said. Read more in Newsday and at MLB.com.

  • Mike Puma in the Post looks at the challenge of keeping the Mets’ dynamic young arms healthy.

  • Mark Fischer in the Daily News writes about a petition against signing Reyes on domestic-violence grounds.

  • Lucas Duda remains limited to riding a stationary bicycle as he awaits the stress fracture in his lower back to heal.

  • From the bloggers … Mets Report would skip Syndergaard against the Nationals and have him miss the All-Star Game.

BIRTHDAYS: Mike Bruhert turns 65.


YOU’RE UP: Do you believe Reyes will be a Met?