There would be no time for babying, for coddling, for pampering. This was adult swim time, deep end of the water, and Terry Collins wanted to see what Zack Wheeler could do with his tank running low and the stakes growing high. Two on, one out, scoreless tie, bottom six.

Whatcha got, kid?

“To us,” Collins said, “it was really important for him to get through the inning.”

He got through the inning. He carved a slider past Dan Uggla for strike three, he jammed Chris Johnson’s wrists and induced a pop-up, and that was that and that was a wrap, six full innings and 102 pitches, seven strikeouts, four hits.

“Once I settled down,” Wheeler would say, “I felt like I had all of my pitches working.”

One day will not rescue the Mets from where they’re headed, from 90 losses or worse, from another summer of stillness at Citi Field, and nobody was prepared to argue otherwise. Still, this was about as satisfying as it’s been for the Mets in a good, long while, their present and their future yielding two victories and a hundred times more good feelings.

“These two guys,” Collins said, “are going to win a lot of baseball games together before they’re through.”

Matt Harvey set the bar high first, as he has done for 11 months, the first of these two electric arms to arrive, the first to dazzle the Braves, throwing six no-hit innings before tiring in the eighth, the Mets hanging on for the 4-3 win.