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Tuesday, April 8, 2014
Colon delivers ace performance vs. Braves

By Adam Rubin

ATLANTA -- The Mets committed two years, $20 million to Bartolo Colon in December to try to offset the loss of Matt Harvey. Nights like Tuesday in Atlanta are what Mets brass had in mind.

Colon contributed seven scoreless innings as the Mets opened a nine-game road trip with a 4-0 win against the Braves at Turner Field.

After an error by Ruben Tejada left two runners on base with two outs in the seventh, Colon completed his outing by ramping up his fastball to 93 mph to retire Jason Heyward on a groundout to second base.


Daniel Shirey/USA TODAY SportsBartolo Colon tossed seven scoreless innings against the Braves.


“What made me feel more amped up was actually that I had the runners in scoring position,” Colon said through an interpreter. “That I was very, very worried about.”

Said Terry Collins: “He was really, really good tonight. He pitched in, pitched out, pitched down, pitched up. He really gave them a different look no matter what he was throwing. He really did a good job.”

Collins said he did not want Colon starting the eighth because the 40-year-old right-hander already had logged 101 pitches in the game and will be pitching on standard rest Sunday in Anaheim in his next outing.

The Mets had opened a four-run lead in the top half of the eighth, which cemented the manager’s decision.

“He only had about a half-dozen pitches -- or maybe 10 pitches -- left before I was going to get him out anyway,” Collins said. “So I just thought I’d go with a clean inning with Kyle [Farnsworth].”

Colon had surrendered three runs on nine hits, including a pair of homers, in six innings in his Mets debut last Wednesday against the Washington Nationals.

This time, he said: “I felt great. Especially when you face a team as tough as Atlanta, you prepare to be very tough mentally. So that’s how I felt today.”

Said catcher Travis d’Arnaud: “His ball moves all over. I don’t even know what to say. I just know he has command of all his pitches and he did what he wanted to do.”