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NYM@ATL: Gee takes shutout into ninth against Braves

Can Dillon Gee rebound?

The Mets' right-hander came within two outs of a shutout the last time he took the mound. Instead, he retreated to the clubhouse with the loss after surrendering a walk-off, two-run home run against the Braves.

"When it comes down to it, I just couldn't get it done," Gee said. "I had the opportunity, and couldn't finish it."

Gee didn't afford himself any sympathy, despite tossing 8 1/3 innings and allowing only five hits and one walk.

"It's tough after something like this to be pleased," Gee said. "To go out there and have an opportunity to throw a complete game and get a win for the team, it's tough to be pleased if we lose. And we lost. That's the bottom line."

Manager Terry Collins defended his decision to leave Gee in for the final frame.

"He deserved to go out there, in my opinion," Collins said. "He was mowing them down pretty good, so I thought he deserved to go out there. And if you're going to send them out there, you've got to let him have a chance. If you're just going to take him out after the first guy gets on, you shouldn't send him out."

Gee (5-7, 4.56 ERA) will have his shot at redemption on Saturday when he faces the Phillies at Citizens Bank Park, with the Mets going for their sixth win in eight games. The Phillies trumped Gee in late April, when he yielded four runs on seven hits over six frames.

Philadelphia will counter with rookie Jonathan Pettibone, who served up seven runs (six earned) on 10 hits in three innings against the Rockies last Saturday. This season, the 22-year-old has posted a 3-3 record and 4.40 ERA.

Mets: Niese lands on disabled list
New York placed southpaw Jonathon Niese on the disabled list Friday, a day after he had to depart his start early. Doctors diagnosed the left-hander with a partial rotator cuff tear. Niese, a 13-game winner last season, will be on a strength program for two weeks.

"It can heal by itself," said assistant general manager John Ricco. "If there is any room for optimism, that would be it. He will be reevaluated in two weeks."

In 14 starts this season, Niese has compiled a 3-6 record and 4.32 ERA.

"Jon Niese was our No. 1 guy coming out of Spring Training," Collins said. "This does not help us."

Phillies: Club welcomes Utley back
Second baseman Chase Utley returned to the Phillies' lineup on Friday for the first time in a month. Utley had been sidelined with a strained right oblique.

"I'm very happy to have him back," said Phillies manager Charlie Manuel.

Utley, who missed 28 games, went 0-for-5 on Friday.

Worth noting
• The Phillies are 5-2 against the Mets this season and have outscored New York, 38-22.

• Phillies third baseman Michael Young is batting .444 (12-for-27) this season against the Mets, despite going 0-for-5 on Friday.

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