ATLANTA (AP) — The standings paint an ugly picture for the Mets.
Terry Collins’ advice? Don’t look.
New York’s swoon continued as rookie Jacob deGrom gave up three runs in the first inning and the Mets’ offense continued to struggle without David Wright in a 3-1 loss to Julio Teheran and the Atlanta Braves on Wednesday night.
The Mets have lost four straight and seven of their last eight games to fall 10 games behind first-place Atlanta in the NL East. The Mets, a season-worst 11 games below .500, remained a half-game ahead of last-place Philadelphia.
Collins said this is not the time to focus on his team’s place in the standings.
“We’ve got to quit worrying about the standings,” Collins said. “We’ve got to start winning. That takes care of everything.
“Don’t worry about where we are when the All-Star break comes. The only thing that’s going to matter is where we are in September, not in July.”
The Mets hope to have Wright back in the lineup when they open a home series against Texas on Friday night. Wright remained in New York this week to receive treatment for his bruised left rotator cuff.
“Obviously we miss David’s bat in the lineup, there’s no doubt,” Collins said. “We competed as good as we can compete.”
Chris Johnson hit a three-run double in the first inning to help the Braves extend their season-best winning streak to seven games.
Teheran (8-5) survived an injury scare when Eric Campbell’s fourth-inning liner hit him the lower right leg.
Teheran said his lower right leg was “burning” after he was hit.
“I wanted to stay in the game so bad,” he said.
Teheran gave up four hits and three walks in seven innings while lowering his ERA to 2.29.
“He gave us a great outing,” Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez said. “The last two innings, it was a gut check. He got himself in trouble and made some great pitches.”
Jordan Walden pitched a perfect ninth for his third save as closer Craig Kimbrel received a night off.
Atlanta’s winning streak includes a four-game sweep at Philadelphia and its first sweep of the Mets since September 2012 at New York.
A season-long problem with walks again hurt deGrom (1-5) in his long first inning.
The Braves, helped by two walks, loaded the bases with no outs. Atlanta was in danger of wasting the opportunity before Johnson lined the three-run double past Campbell at third base with two outs.
After throwing 37 pitches in the first, deGrom didn’t walk another batter or allow another run. He gave up three runs on six hits in five innings. He had eight strikeouts.
“That first inning got me,” deGrom said.
“I think I was a little amped up, just trying to maybe overthrow it a little bit in the first. To recover from that was good. I wanted to at least get to five (innings).”
Eric Young Jr. singled, stole second, advanced to third on a wild pitch and scored on Curtis Granderson’s fly ball to left field in the fourth inning. Young reached on another single in the sixth before being picked off first base by Teheran.
Teheran gave up a single to Juan Lagares and walked Granderson before striking out Campbell to end the sixth.
Lagares had a one-out single off Anthony Vavaro in the eighth. Daniel Murphy hit a sharp grounder toward second base that Tommy La Stella caught while diving toward the bag. While on the ground, La Stella flipped the ball to Andrelton Simmons for the force out at second.
La Stella started after leaving Tuesday night’s game with a right foot that was bruised when he was hit by a pitch.
NOTES: Young and Lagares each had two hits. … Ruben Tejada’s 10-game hitting streak ended. … Both teams are off Thursday. The Mets open a home series against Texas on Friday night, and the Braves’ homestand continues with a weekend series against Arizona.
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