NEW YORK – Adam LaRoche homered and had four hits, and Marcus Giles also connected to lead Tim Hudson and the Atlanta Braves over the New York Mets 7-4.

Hudson threw six innings and earned his fifth win in six decisions despite giving up three homers for the first time since May 2002.

Ryan Langerhans added three RBIs and reached safely four times for the NL East-leading Braves, who remained five games ahead of second-place Philadelphia. Giles also reached base safely four times, and Jeff Francoeur got three hits.

Cliff Floyd, Mike Piazza and Mike Jacobs connected off Hudson for the Mets, who dropped to 5-15 in their last 20 games.

Hudson (13-8) allowed four runs, six hits and four walks in a shaky outing but still improved to 3-0 in four starts against New York this year. He is 86-4 in 111 starts when receiving at least four runs of support.

The last time the sinkerballer served up three homers was on May 19, 2002, with Oakland at Toronto.

Making his fourth start after missing most of the season while recovering from back surgery, Steve Trachsel (1-3) allowed five runs – two earned – and nine hits in six innings. In his first outing this year at home, he was hurt by David Wright’s throwing error in the first. The right-hander has lost his last three starts.

Chris Reitsma retired Wright with two on to end the seventh and worked 1 1-3 perfect innings. Kyle Farnsworth got three outs for his eighth save.

Giles walked in the first, stole second and scored on a two-out throwing error by third baseman Wright. The miscue proved even more costly when LaRoche followed with a two-run homer, his 17th.

The Mets missed a chance to answer in the bottom half when the inning ended on a disputed call. Hudson walked the bases loaded with two outs, and Piazza sent a liner to center that appeared to hit the grass just before Andruw Jones grabbed it with a lunge.

The Mets thought the ball fell in for a hit that would have scored two, but first base umpire Rob Drake called it a clean catch and the inning was over.

Francoeur doubled in the third and Langerhans’ two-run single made it 5-0, which is normally more than enough support for Hudson.

But Floyd hit a two-run drive in the bottom half, matching a career high with his 31st of the season, and Piazza and Jacobs connected for consecutive homers to start the fourth.

Piazza took a curtain call after No. 394 of his career, and Jacobs’ shot traveled an estimated 460 feet over the right-field bullpen.

It was Jacobs’ second in two days after a drought that extended to Aug. 24, when he completed a stretch of four home runs in his first four games in the major leagues.

Giles homered leading off the seventh against Shingo Takatsu, making it 6-4. Langerhans added an RBI double in the ninth.

Notes: Francoeur made several nice plays in RF. He robbed Jose Reyes of a homer with a smooth catch in the ninth. … Mets 2B Kaz Matsui, on a career-best 12-game hitting streak, might be sidelined for a while because of a sore right hamstring. … New York purchased 2B Anderson Hernandez’s contract from Triple-A Norfolk and designated LHP Dae-Sung Koo for assignment. … The Braves stole three bases against Piazza, who has thrown out only 12 of 84 basestealers this year (14 percent). … Atlanta leads the season series 13-5 with one game remaining. … Trachsel has allowed five home runs this year. … Speedy SS Rafael Furcal grounded into two double plays for the Braves. He has bounced into 11 double plays this season. … Floyd also hit 31 homers in 2001 with Florida. … Plate umpire Lance Barksdale was hit in the right shoulder by a seventh-inning pitch but remained in the game. … It was LaRoche’s third career four-hit game.

AP-ES-09-17-05 1647EDT


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