ATLANTA - Well, if it's September, the Atlanta Braves must be beating the New York Mets again.
Greg Maddux pitched seven shutout innings, stringing Mets bats along Monday night as the Braves extended their National League East lead to four games with a 6-3 win at Turner Field.
In this highly anticipated division showdown, the Braves continued their mastery over their fiercest division challenger. The Mets last won a September game in Atlanta in 1996, and they have two more chances this season.
"We seem to get more fired up when New York comes to town," pitcher Kevin Millwood said. "You see everyone's intensity around here get turned up a notch."
The Mets were not be able to reply to Mr. Maddux, who extended his streak of consecutive scoreless innings to 29â, the second longest by a Braves pitcher in 20 years. In winning his 18th game, Mr. Maddux displayed the technical precision - he allowed only five singles - he showed in winning four Cy Young awards during the 1990s.
The Braves offense provided Mr. Maddux with plenty of support, as Brian Jordan homered and drove in two, and Andres Galarraga added two doubles.
Atlanta's Andy Ashby starts in tonight's 7:40 game opposite New York's Glendon Rusch.