Harang pulled with no-hitter, Braves beat Mets 6-0

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NEW YORK (AP) - Aaron Harang knew the score, he’d done this before: No hits, too many tosses.

Harang didn’t allow a hit for seven innings but was pulled after 121 pitches, and reliever Luis Avilan gave up David Wright’s two-out single in the eighth as the Atlanta Braves beat the New York Mets 6-0 Friday night.

“It wasn’t that tough of a decision, really,” Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez said.

As Harang’s pitch count increased on a chilly evening, it seemed doubtful he would go the distance. Harang walked six, including two in the sixth inning and another pair in the seventh.

“I know how it works,” he said.

Sure does.

In 2011, in his first start for San Diego after missing a month because of a foot injury, he pitched no-hit ball for six innings and was taken out after 95 pitches.

Harang retired the first two Mets batters in the seventh, then went to full counts on the next three. He threw 23 pitches in the inning.

“If I’m through eight, I’m going back out,” Harang said.

Harang (3-1) left for a pinch hitter during a long, four-run eighth. He was never in the on-deck circle - the decision had already been made.

Gonzalez had Harang’s health in mind. The 35-year-old righty said he fought his manager, but not much.

“I know it’s probably the hardest decision he’s ever going to have to make,” Harang said. “He reiterated multiple times, ‘Man, I hate doing that.’”

Gonzalez said it wasn’t quite that difficult.

“I want him pitching 27 more times,” Gonzalez said. “If it was the ninth inning, maybe, think about it.”

“It gets to the point you chase that no-hitter, chase that dragon, you’re up to 140 pitches,” he said. “I think we made the right decision.”

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