NEW YORK – The Braves used a seven-run sixth inning, their most explosive frame of the season, to defeat the Mets 9-2 on Wednesday at Citi Field. With the victory, the Braves (12-15) split a four-game series with New York.

ExploreMore AJC coverage of the Braves

Here are five observations:

1. The Braves on Tuesday had a rough six hours. They felt they hung around and played well both Monday and Tuesday, but went back to the hotel with two losses.

They couldn’t do anything about those. The next-best thing: Winning Wednesday. They salvaged a split with a team that held the National League’s best record entering the day.

“For us, to be square with them until the next time we see them, I think, is very big,” Travis d’Arnaud said. “It gives us a lot of momentum going forward that, we know when our back’s against the wall, down two to one, we know we’re not giving up and we’re still going.”

Combined ShapeCaption
Atlanta Braves' Dansby Swanson scores on an RBI single hit by Ronald Acuna Jr. off New York Mets relief pitcher Trevor Williams in the sixth inning of a baseball game, Wednesday, May 4, 2022, in New York. (AP Photo/John Minchillo)

Credit: AP

Atlanta Braves' Dansby Swanson scores on an RBI single hit by Ronald Acuna Jr. off New York Mets relief pitcher Trevor Williams in the sixth inning of a baseball game, Wednesday, May 4, 2022, in New York. (AP Photo/John Minchillo)

Credit: AP

Combined ShapeCaption
Atlanta Braves' Dansby Swanson scores on an RBI single hit by Ronald Acuna Jr. off New York Mets relief pitcher Trevor Williams in the sixth inning of a baseball game, Wednesday, May 4, 2022, in New York. (AP Photo/John Minchillo)

Credit: AP

Credit: AP

2. When talking about Wednesday’s seven-run sixth inning, Braves manager Brian Snitker said he didn’t know if his team had done that this season.

He was correct. They had not. But in that frame, they reminded everyone what they could do.

“That was good to see, that we are capable of that,” he said.

Everyone contributed. D’Arnaud drew his first walk of the season with the bases loaded. Adam Duvall and Dansby Swanson, who are struggling and have struck out a lot, both collected hits that scored runs.

The Braves sent 11 men to the plate. Eight consecutive Braves reached, and seven scored.

“Hitting is contagious. It really is,” Duvall said. “Extra-base hits, homers, they’re contagious. I just think it’s a matter of time until we get going.”

3. The Braves have struggled with runners in scoring position early this season. In that regard, this victory seemed encouraging.

The Braves went 4-for-9 with men in scoring position. In their seven-run inning, they collected more hits with runners in scoring position (four) than they did in three previous games in this series (three).

“That’s going to click as the season gets going,” Duvall said. “We’re going to hit, we’re going to score runs. It’s just a matter of time.”

Added d’Arnaud: “We were able to keep the line moving. That’s very big, especially with the way the balls are now – they’re not flying as much. For us to finally string a lot of hits together, a lot of quality at-bats together, I think is very vital.”

Combined ShapeCaption
New York Mets relief pitcher Adam Ottavino (0) reacts in the dugout after being relieved in the sixth inning inning of a baseball game against the Atlanta Braves, Wednesday, May 4, 2022, in New York. Ottavino gave up five runs to the Braves. (AP Photo/John Minchillo)

Credit: AP

New York Mets relief pitcher Adam Ottavino (0) reacts in the dugout after being relieved in the sixth inning inning of a baseball game against the Atlanta Braves, Wednesday, May 4, 2022, in New York. Ottavino gave up five runs to the Braves. (AP Photo/John Minchillo)

Credit: AP

Combined ShapeCaption
New York Mets relief pitcher Adam Ottavino (0) reacts in the dugout after being relieved in the sixth inning inning of a baseball game against the Atlanta Braves, Wednesday, May 4, 2022, in New York. Ottavino gave up five runs to the Braves. (AP Photo/John Minchillo)

Credit: AP

Credit: AP

4. When he watched the video of his own catch, Guillermo Heredia was impressed, he said through interpreter Franco Garcia.

“Wow, that’s crazy,” he thought.

Jeff McNeil smoked a ball high and deep to right field off Ian Anderson. Heredia ran back, tracking it, and leaped at the wall, using his left hand to hold on to the top of the wall while he caught the ball with the glove on his right hand. And after he caught it, he hung on the wall with one arm for a couple of seconds.

Anderson tipped his cap. McNeil looked bewildered.

“To be honest, it made me feel good to start the game, sort,” Heredia said. “It lifted my spirits. I feel like I was going through a little bit of a rough patch there, so that was definitely good for the morale and helped me focus in and feel good about myself, and sort of just brought it all together.”

In the eighth inning, Heredia blasted a two-run homer.

5. Charlie Morton struggled at the beginning of his start, but overall, the Braves’ starting pitching looked good in four games in Queens.

The Mets have scored the most runs in baseball. They have the second-highest team batting average (.257) and the fifth-highest on-base plus slugging percentage (.718).

Snitker said he talked to Max Fried, who allowed two runs over six innings Tuesday, and said: “You guys are through spring training now, and this is kind of getting normal. You have all the starts, and you’re back to season-type form, I think.”

In front of his family, New York native Ian Anderson on Wednesday allowed one run over 5-1/3 frames. He walked four and struck out one.

Braves 9, Mets 2 (box score)

Stat to know

6-With the win in the series finale, the Braves are now six games back of the first-place Mets.

Quotable

“It gives us confidence, and lets us know that we can score seven or more runs in any inning. I think it was really important for us, it was definitely very exciting. It just sort of helps improve the morale, lift the spirits, pump up the energy. Obviously we didn’t get off to the start that we would’ve liked this season, but innings like that definitely help.” - Heredia on the Braves’ big sixth inning

Up next

The Braves on Friday begin an eight-game homestand with three games versus the Brewers. The Braves have not yet announced their starting pitcher.