ATLANTA – Hit the ball in the water and win a prize: a place on the bench.
That was Pete Alonso's situation on Friday, a day after the Mets rookie started a 454-foot circuit over the central field fence in a SunTrust Park pond. The blast, at 118.3 mph at exit speed, was the most touched home run by anyone other than Giancarlo Stanton or Aaron Judge over the five seasons of Statcast .
Dominic Smith started at first base and scored a double in the Mets vs Braves 6-2 win.
"I feel like I came back to what brought me here," said Smith, who scored a 1,026 OPS in 16 goals this season, mostly off the bench. "I feel like I'm back to the prospect that was riding numbers in the minor leagues."
Alonso, who has six homers and 17 RBIs, was eliminated in the eighth inning.
"From now on, Alonso would never have a day off if we kept him hot," said manager Mickey Callaway. "We have nine days in a row, you are strategically trying to pick places to give guys time off."
Alonso is back in Saturday's training against southpaw Sean Newcomb.
"We have a pitch on the left [Saturday], which is right, smack, dab in the middle of these nine games, so you'll see guys have a day off, "Callaway said. "It seemed like a good day for Alonso for that reason. The kid can not play every day, even if he does a good job so far. "
Justin Wilson and Seth Lugo gave a gift to Callaway: a rare and stress-free pen game, as the two lifters combined for three scoreless innings.
Before the game, when he assessed his editor's penchant for creating capsize in the stomach, Callaway said the numbers indicated that his lifters had not been so bad.
Callaway's arguments centered on the .379 average of in-play balls (BABIP) against the Mets marker that came into play on Friday. This number was highest in the major leagues.
Normality would fall in the .280 – .300 range.
"So they hit where we are not," Callaway said. "The pitching will turn around just because of the law of averages. We need to make better shots in places. We have to make sure to keep the ball out of the center of the plate, which probably contributes to those average batting balls in numbers of games, but we are going and these guys are going to click. "
Todd Frazier divided the playing time between the third base and the short stop in a re-education match for Single-A St. Lucie, finishing 0-3. The veteran field player remains on the verge of joining the club after a sprain in the left oblique at the beginning of spring.