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Fried, Matz return to mound for Braves, Mets

The cushion allows the Braves to bring back Fried — who suffered a back injury Sept. 5, when he allowed three runs over five innings and didn’t factor into the decision in Atlanta’s 10-4 loss to the Washington Nationals — with the idea of setting him up to start the first game of the best-of-three series on Sept. 30.

“We didn’t want to take him any farther than Friday, because he’s ready to go,” Braves manager Brian Snitker said of Fried, who entered Thursday tied for third in the NL in ERA. “I think everything will work out fine.”

Things did not appear as if they would work out fine for the Mets (23-27) when two-time reigning Cy Young Award winner Jacob deGrom exited after two innings Wednesday due to a sore hamstring and No. 2 starter Seth Lugo blew a 3-0 first-inning lead and was chased after giving up six runs in just 1 2/3 innings Thursday.

But the Mets stayed afloat in the playoff race by getting seven innings of one-run relief from a quartet of pitchers as they came back from a 4-0 deficit to earn a 5-4 win Wednesday night before receiving 7 1/3 innings of one-hit, scoreless work from five relievers during the three-run comeback Thursday.

New York enters Friday 1 1/2 games behind the Phillies and Reds.

“Just really proud of this team,” Nimmo said. “Had a lot of times where we could have given up and just been like, ‘Know what, oh well,’ and accepted it. And none of them did.”

Matz was demoted to the bullpen after posting a 9.00 ERA in his first five starts and went on the injured list Aug. 30, one day after he threw a scoreless inning against the New York Yankees in his lone relief appearance.

Fried is 2-1 with a 3.00 ERA in 12 games (seven starts) against the Mets. Matz is 6-2 with a 2.83 ERA in 14 starts against the Braves.

–Field Level Media

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