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Braves Hit 4 Homers, Beat Mets 4-2 Behind Lowe

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Alex Gonzalez

Atlanta Braves Alex Gonzalez, center, celebrates with teammates as he enter the dugout after hitting a solo homerun against the New York Mets during the fourth inning, in the first baseball game of a doubleheader Saturday, April 16, 2011, at Turner Field in Atlanta. (AP Photo/Gregory Smith)

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By Charles Odum

AP Sports Writer

ATLANTA (AP)  Alex Gonzalez hit two of Atlanta’s four solo homers and the Braves finally provided some offense for Derek Lowe, beating the skidding New York Mets 4-2 on Saturday in the opener of a doubleheader.

Chipper Jones and Freddie Freeman also connected for the Braves, who finished with six hits.

Lowe (2-2) gave up two runs and five hits in six innings. He has a 1.82 ERA this season, but lost his previous two starts as the Braves were shut out by Milwaukee and Philadelphia.

D.J. Carrasco (0-1) gave up four hits, including three homers, and three runs in 3 2-3 innings as a fill-in starter for New York, which lost its sixth straight game. The Mets were playing their second doubleheader in three days after getting swept by Colorado at home on Thursday.

Before the game, the Mets placed right-hander Chris Young on the 15-day disabled list with biceps tendinitis in his pitching arm. They did not immediately announce a replacement for Young to start on Sunday.

Craig Kimbrel worked the ninth to earn his fourth save. With two outs, he gave up an infield single to Jose Reyes before getting Angel Pagan on a fly to center.

The series opener was postponed by rain Friday night. The Mets were playing consecutive doubleheaders for the first time since Aug. 20-21, 1998, against St. Louis. Club officials called the commissioner’s office Friday night, hoping to avoid a second straight twinbill, but the makeup game remained.

Mike Pelfrey was slated to pitch the nightcap for New York against Jair Jurrjens.

Players wore No. 42 jerseys as part of baseball’s annual tribute to Jackie Robinson, originally planned for Friday night. Among those wearing No. 42 was Mets left fielder Willie Harris who, like Robinson, was born in Cairo, Ga.

Harris drove in Carlos Beltran with a double off Lowe in the sixth, cutting it to 3-2. Josh Thole had a single and scored on Reyes’ grounder in the fifth.

The Braves began the day with 11 homers in 13 games.

Gonzalez has 16 of his 140 career homers against the Mets, more than any other team.

Jones, whose history of success against the Mets is no secret, began the day with a .319 career batting average against New York. The homer was his 45th against the Mets, matching his total against the Phillies.

Mets manager Terry Collins was pulling for Carrasco to last at least five innings, but the right-hander faded with two outs in the fourth. He gave up Gonzalez’s second homer of the game before walking Freddie Freeman and Lowe.

Ryota Igarashi replaced Carrasco and ended the inning on Martin Prado’s fly to center.

Left-hander Pat Misch, recalled from Triple-A Buffalo, pitched two innings, giving up Freeman’s first homer of the season to make it 4-2.

NOTES: Brian McCann and Dan Uggla were presented with their 2010 Silver Slugger Awards before the game. Tim Hudson collected his award for NL comeback player of the year. … The Braves recalled RHP Jairo Asencio from Triple-A Gwinnett. C J.C. Boscan was sent back to Gwinnett. … Mets LF Jason Bay, on the disabled list with a strained left rib cage, was to play a rehab game for Class-A St. Lucie on Saturday night and could join the team on Tuesday.

© 2011 by STATS LLC and Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and Associated Press is strictly prohibited.

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