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Braves 5, Mets 4: Juan Lagares, Wilmer Flores perfect at plate

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. -- Emilio Bonifacio delivered a walk-off RBI single in a two-run ninth inning against Zack Thornton and the Atlanta Braves rallied for a 5-4 win against the New York Mets on Tuesday at ESPN Wide World of Sports.

Juan Lagares and Wilmer Flores combined to reach base in all six of their plate appearances in the loss.

Lagares finished 2-for-2 with a walk, two RBIs and a stolen base. He had missed three days of games while dealing with a dental issue.

Flores’ third hit -- an RBI single in the fifth inning against Chris Withrow -- had staked the Mets to a 4-2 lead. Flores also was charged with an error at third base.

Manager Terry Collins continued to praise Lagares’ noticeably better physique. Lagares dropped about 20 pounds during the offseason. He is projected to start in center field against left-handed pitching and otherwise serve as a late-game defensive replacement.

“He’s in tremendous shape,” Collins said. “I think it’s a tribute to him the way he’s gone about things. He’s having a good spring. He’s bound and determined to show us that he belongs back in the lineup.”

The Mets dropped to 3-3-1 in Grapefruit League play.

Roger Bernadina, delayed arriving at camp because of a visa issue, started in the leadoff spot and in right field. He went 1-for-2 with a walk and a run scored in his Mets debut. Bernadina, a native of Curacao who now spends his offseasons in Florida, recently had been in Amsterdam securing his visa.

“I’ve been doing a lot of things indoors back home in Holland,” said Bernadina, who last appeared in the majors in 2014 with the Cincinnati Reds and Los Angeles Dodgers. “But I’ve been swinging. I’ve been throwing a little bit. But that’s the only thing I’ve basically been doing. So far, so good.”

Matt Harvey allowed one run on three hits and two walks in three innings. Rafael Montero and Dario Alvarez each surrendered one run on two hits in an inning. Alvarez also walked two batters.

With the Mets trailing 1-0 in the fourth, Lagares highlighted a three-run frame against Atlanta’s No. 1 prospect Sean Newcomb with a two-run single to left field. Marc Krauss followed with an RBI single. Newcomb was acquired by the Braves in the November trade that sent Andrelton Simmons to the Los Angeles Angels.

Shifty: Like the Houston Astros last Saturday, the Braves did a pronounced shift on Michael Conforto, with three infielders on the right side. According to Inside Edge, Conforto hit only 21.6 percent of his balls in play to the left third of the field -- including only 3.3 percent on the ground to that third of the field.

What’s next: The New York Yankees pay a visit to Port St. Lucie on Wednesday for a 1:10 p.m. ET game (SNY/WOR). Jacob deGrom makes his spring debut opposite right-hander Ivan Nova. Curtis Granderson, who resumed using contact lenses on Tuesday, is expected to make his first spring training start after dealing with pinkeye. David Wright will be away from camp along with Sandy Alderson and Jeff Wilpon for a memorial service at Citi Field for Shannon Forde, the Mets media relations official who passed away Friday after a battle with breast cancer.