0

Heyward powers Braves to win

ATLANTA -- Jason Heyward is recovering his power stroke just in time for the Atlanta Braves' September push for the playoffs.

Heyward homered and drove in four runs, Martin Prado drove in three runs and the NL East-leading Braves beat the New York Mets 9-3 on Monday night.

Heyward had four hits, including a three-run homer off Pat Misch in the second inning. He has five homers in August after hitting only one total in June and July, when he was slowed by a thumb injury.

Jair Jurrjens (6-4) gave up six hits and matched his career high with six walks, but his eight strikeouts helped him limit the Mets to three runs in 52/3 innings.

Heyward, a rookie who was voted an All-Star starter, has 16 homers and 62 RBIs and is hitting .278 -- his high mark since June 3. The four hits and four RBIs each matched Heyward's career high.

Prado had two hits, including a two-run single in the sixth. Each of the first five hitters in Atlanta's lineup had two or more hits.

One day after his homer in the bottom of the ninth capped the Braves' 7-6 comeback win over Florida, Brian McCann padded the lead with a shot deep into the right-field seats off Oliver Perez in the seventh.

Misch (0-4) gave up eight hits and five runs in three innings for the Mets, who opened a 10-game road trip with the first of four games against the Braves.

Jurrjens gave up two hits -- including Josh Thole's run-scoring triple -- and two walks in the sixth, when the Mets cut the Braves' lead to 5-3.

Manager Bobby Cox pulled Jurrjens after the right-hander walked Luis Castillo to load the bases. Chris Carter ended the inning with a groundout against left-hander Eric O'Flaherty.