ATLANTA — Chris Johnson homered for the first time in more than a month, Kris Medlen overcame a defensive blunder and the Atlanta Braves bounced back from a doubleheader sweep, beating the New York Mets, 5-3, Wednesday night.
Johnson hit a three-run homer in the fourth, his first time going deep since May 13. Jordan Schafer put the Braves ahead to stay with some gutsy baserunning in the fifth, scoring on a wild pitch that didn’t even roll off the dirt around home plate.
Medlen (4-7) pitched seven-plus innings for his third win in four starts this month, even though he cost himself two unearned runs with an errant throw.
Shawn Marcum (0-9) took another loss, becoming just the third pitcher in Mets history to start a season dropping nine straight decisions.
The Braves scored first with two outs in the fourth. B.J. Upton and Dan Uggla hit back-to-back singles, and then Marcum left a 2-0 pitch over the plate to Johnson. He drove it into the left-field seats, slapping hands emphatically with first-base coach Terry Pendleton on his way around the bases.
But Medlen gave the runs right back in the fifth.
The Braves quickly reclaimed the lead in the bottom half of the inning.
Schafer led off with a double and advanced on Andrelton Simmons’ sacrifice before Freddie Freeman walked. It looked as if Marcum might escape the jam when he struck out Justin Upton. But a pitch to Brian McCann bounced off Buck’s chest protector, rolling off to the catcher’s right.
Schafer was nearly halfway down the line already — the Mets shifted their defense against McCann, leaving only third baseman David Wright on the left side of the infield — and the runner broke for home as soon as he saw the ball get away. Even though it rolled only to the edge of the grass and Buck made a quick flip to Marcum covering home, Schafer slid headfirst under the tag.
B.J. Upton followed with an RBI double that gave the Braves a two-run cushion, finishing off Marcum.