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3 New York errors open door for Braves' 4-run 8th inning and 5-3 win over stunned Mets

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ATLANTA - Jeurys Familia tried to shoulder the blame.

Alas, there were too many errors for one Mets player to stand as the lone culprit.

Three miscues by New York fueled Atlanta's comeback as the Braves scored four runs in the eighth inning and beat the Mets 5-3 on Monday night for their fifth straight win.

Errors by Familia (1-3), centre fielder Juan Lagares and third baseman Eric Campbell in the eighth helped the Braves rally from a 3-1 deficit. The bad defence took a win from Mets starter Zack Wheeler, who gave up only one run.

"We've got to catch the baseball better," Mets manager Terry Collins said. "We didn't catch the baseball tonight."

Trailing 3-1, the Braves loaded the bases with no outs in the eighth against Familia. Following singles by Justin Upton and Jason Heyward, Chris Johnson hit a soft grounder to Familia, who threw low to shortstop Ruben Tejada at second base for an error on what could have been a double play.

"I tried to be too quick throwing to the base," Familia said. "It was my fault.

"It's tough because you work for something and you have a chance to make the double play and you don't make it."

The miscues kept coming.

Tommy La Stella's single up the middle drove in Upton, and Heyward scored the tying run when Lagares bobbled the ball in centre for another error. With one out, pinch-hitter Ryan Doumit's walk loaded the bases again.

Campbell, the Mets' fill-in third baseman while David Wright sits with a bruised left rotator cuff, bobbled Andrelton Simmons' grounder for the third error of the inning, allowing Johnson to score the go-ahead run.

Dana Eveland replaced Familia and walked Freddie Freeman, pushing Atlanta's lead to two runs.

It was a cruel letdown when the win seemed so close.

"We turn the double-play ball, we're out of the inning," Collins said. "That's probably the hardest part. (Familia) has pitched so good."

Curtis Granderson opened the game with his 11th homer. It was his 26th career leadoff homer.

Anthony Varvaro (3-1) pitched one scoreless inning to earn the victory. Craig Kimbrel recorded the final three outs for his 25th save.

The Braves announced late in the game that catcher Evan Gattis will be placed on the 15-day disabled list after an MRI revealed a bulging thoracic disk in his back.

Gattis, hitting .290 with 16 homers and 39 RBIs, missed his fourth straight game on Monday night with what had been called back spasms. He said he was told 95 per cent of similar bulging disks "kind of resolve themselves" without surgery. He said he'll have an epidural as early as Tuesday.

Rookie Christian Bethancourt, who made his first home start, and veteran Gerald Laird will be Atlanta's primary catchers for at least two weeks.

Wheeler gave up one run on four hits and five walks in 6 1-3 innings.

The Braves scored their only run off Wheeler in the fifth. B.J. Upton, who hit a leadoff single and moved to third on Simmons' single, scored on Freeman's fly ball to left field.

Atlanta's Alex Wood allowed three runs on six hits in six innings.

Travis d'Arnaud's double drove in Chris Young, who reached on a single, in the second. Young's fly ball in drove in Daniel Murphy from third base in the third.

Collins successfully challenged a ruling that B.J. Upton stole second base in the third inning. The safe call was overturned following the review, which lasted 1 minute, 15 seconds. Upton's slide easily beat the throw, but the replay showed he was tagged when he bounced off the bag at the end of his pop-up slide.

NOTES: Fans with tickets to Tuesday night's game can arrive early, with gates opening at 3:30 p.m., to see the U.S.-Belgium World Cup game on the video board. ... Collins said Wright will avoid the DL, but will remain in New York for rest and treatment during the Braves series. Collins hopes Wright is ready to play Friday when the Mets open a home series against Texas. ... Braves LHP Mike Minor will face Mets RHP Daisuke Matsuzaka in Tuesday night's second game of the series.

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