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Nationals @ Mets: 08/11 1:10 PM ET; SNY, MASN; WCBS, ESPN, WJFK

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  • Nationals @ Mets: 08/11 1:10 PM ET; SNY, MASN; WCBS, ESPN, WJFK

    GAME 118, HOME GAME 55

    Sunday, 11th August,
    1:10 PM ET
    Citi Field









    Drew's Sig

  • #2

    Mets Look to Sweep, Leapfrog Nats

    For weeks now, the Washington Nationals have served as the inspiration for struggling teams hoping to climb back into contention.

    But if the Nationals are going to hang on to their suddenly precarious perch atop the National League wild-card race Sunday afternoon, they're going to have to beat the team threatening to rewrite the template for in-season Cinderella runs.

    The scorching hot New York Mets will look to complete their climb from the bottom of the NL into wild-card position Sunday when they host the Nats in the finale of a three-game series.

    Reigning NL Cy Young Award winner Jacob deGrom (7-7, 2.77 ERA) is scheduled to take the mound for the Mets against the Nationals' Anibal Sanchez (7-6, 3.67) in a battle of right-handers.

    The Mets ran their winning streak to eight games Saturday night when Luis Guillorme led off the eighth inning with a game-tying pinch-hit homer -- the first round-tripper of his big league career -- and J.D. Davis lofted the go-ahead sacrifice fly five batters later to lift New York to a 4-3 victory.

    The Mets, who were tied for 13th place in the NL and eight games out of the second wild card on July 24, have won 15 of their last 16 games to move within a half-game of the Nationals and Milwaukee Brewers, who are tied for the two wild-card spots.

    With a win on Sunday, the Mets would complete their most pivotal home sweep since they took three in a row from the Nationals from July 31 through Aug. 2, 2015, to move into a tie for first place with Washington in the NL East. New York took over sole possession of first place the next day and ended up reaching the World Series.

    "I think it's pretty reminiscent of what happened in 2015, it's really exciting," Mets starting pitcher Noah Syndergaard told reporters Saturday night. "Anybody in the clubhouse has the potential to be the hero. Tonight it was 'G.' It was awesome. Awesome win. (Looking to) put the final nail in the coffin (Sunday) with deGrom on the mound."

    The Nationals aren't too far removed from their own stirring run. Washington was 12 games under .500 following the games of May 23 before mounting a 30-11 surge that vaulted it into a wild-card spot.

    With that spot now endangered, Nationals manager Dave Martinez implored his players Saturday night to embrace the sudden competition with the Mets and to remember how Washington got back into the race.

    "We're fighting to get in the playoffs, they're fighting to get in the playoffs," Martinez said. "I believe in those boys in that clubhouse. People kicked us, we were down and you saw what they can do. Not by any means are we down."

    Both deGrom and Sanchez earned wins in their most recent starts. On Monday, DeGrom allowed two runs over seven innings as the Mets beat the Miami Marlins 6-2. A day later, Sanchez gave up two runs (one earned) over six innings in the Nationals' 5-3 win over the San Francisco Giants.

    DeGrom is 8-4 with a 2.44 ERA in 17 career starts against the Nationals. Sanchez is 5-5 with a 4.06 ERA in 15 starts against the Mets.

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    • #3

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      • #4

        Top of 1:
        Nationals first. Turner hit an infield single to shortstop. Eaton flied out to right fielder McNeil. Rendon singled to right, Turner to second. Soto walked on a full count, Turner to third, Rendon to second. M.Adams struck out. A.Cabrera safe at third on throwing error by first baseman Alonso, Turner scored, Rendon scored, Soto scored. Parra was hit by a pitch. Suzuki lined out to left fielder Davis.
        Runs: 3, Hits: 2

        Bottom of 1:
        Mets first. McNeil flied out to right fielder Eaton. Rosario grounded out, shortstop Turner to first baseman M.Adams. Conforto struck out.
        Runs: 0, Hits: 0

        Top of 2:
        Nationals second. A.Sánchez struck out. Turner flied out to right fielder McNeil. Eaton struck out.
        Runs: 0, Hits: 0

        Bottom of 2:
        Mets second. Alonso flied out to left fielder Soto. Davis singled to right. Ramos singled to left, Davis to second. Frazier popped out to second baseman A.Cabrera. Panik singled to right, Davis scored, Ramos to second. deGrom hit an infield single to shortstop, Ramos to third, Panik to second. McNeil doubled to right, Ramos scored, Panik scored, deGrom to third. Rosario grounded out, pitcher A.Sánchez to first baseman M.Adams.
        Runs: 3, Hits: 5

        Top of 3:
        Nationals third. Rendon singled to left. Soto flied out to center fielder Conforto. M.Adams struck out. A.Cabrera grounded out, catcher Ramos to first baseman Alonso.
        Runs: 0, Hits: 1

        Bottom of 3:
        Mets third. Conforto struck out. Alonso fouled out to first baseman M.Adams. Davis flied out to center fielder Parra.
        Runs: 0, Hits: 0

        Top of 4:
        Nationals fourth. Parra struck out. Suzuki grounded out, shortstop Rosario to first baseman Alonso. A.Sánchez struck out.
        Runs: 0, Hits: 0

        Bottom of 4:
        Mets fourth. Ramos doubled to right. Frazier grounded out, third baseman Rendon to first baseman M.Adams. Panik grounded out, second baseman A.Cabrera to first baseman M.Adams, Ramos to third. deGrom flied out to center fielder Parra.
        Runs: 0, Hits: 1

        Top of 5:
        Nationals fifth. Turner struck out. Eaton flied out to center fielder Conforto. Rendon singled to right. Soto grounded out, second baseman Panik to first baseman Alonso.
        Runs: 0, Hits: 1

        Bottom of 5:
        Mets fifth. McNeil walked on a full count. Rosario popped out to third baseman Rendon. Conforto struck out. Alonso singled to center, McNeil to third. Davis lined out to right fielder Eaton.
        Runs: 0, Hits: 1

        Top of 6:
        Nationals sixth. Avilán pitching. M.Adams struck out. A.Cabrera singled to left. Parra struck out. Suzuki singled to left, A.Cabrera to third. Dozier pinch-hitting for A.Sánchez. Brach pitching. Dozier flied out to right fielder McNeil.
        Runs: 0, Hits: 2

        Bottom of 6:
        Mets sixth. Rainey pitching. Ramos grounded out, third baseman Rendon to first baseman M.Adams. Frazier flied out to center fielder Parra. Panik walked. Guillorme pinch-hitting for Brach. Grace pitching. Guillorme struck out.
        Runs: 0, Hits: 0

        Top of 7:
        Nationals seventh. Gsellman pitching. Turner flied out to left fielder Davis. Eaton singled to center. Rendon singled to right, Eaton to second. On right fielder McNeil's fielding error, Eaton to third. J.Wilson pitching. Soto walked on a full count, Rendon to second. M.Adams struck out. A.Cabrera doubled to right, Eaton scored, Rendon scored, Soto to third. Soto was out advancing, right fielder McNeil to second baseman Panik to third baseman Frazier, Soto out.
        Runs: 2, Hits: 3

        Bottom of 7:
        Mets seventh. Robles in as center fielder. Parra in as left fielder. McNeil doubled to center. Strickland pitching. Rosario singled to right, McNeil to third. Conforto hit a sacrifice fly to left fielder Parra, McNeil scored. Alonso was hit by a pitch, Rosario to second. Davis struck out. Hudson pitching. Ramos lined out to left fielder Parra.
        Runs: 1, Hits: 2

        Top of 8:
        Nationals eighth. Familia pitching. Parra struck out. Suzuki struck out. Stevenson pinch-hitting for Hudson. Stevenson struck out.
        Runs: 0, Hits: 0

        Bottom of 8:
        Mets eighth. Suero pitching. Frazier struck out. Panik grounded out, pitcher Suero to first baseman M.Adams. Altherr pinch-hitting for Familia. Altherr struck out.
        Runs: 0, Hits: 0

        Top of 9:
        Nationals ninth. Díaz pitching. Turner struck out. Eaton walked. Eaton stole second. Rendon struck out. Robles homered to left on a 2-1 count, Eaton scored. M.Adams grounded out, second baseman Panik to first baseman Alonso.
        Runs: 2, Hits: 1

        Bottom of 9:
        Mets ninth. Doolittle pitching. McNeil lined out to right fielder Eaton. Rosario struck out. Conforto grounded out, shortstop Turner to first baseman M.Adams.
        Runs: 0, Hits: 0

        Drew's Sig


        • #5

          Cabrera Stings Mets, Nats Hold On to End NY's Streak, 7-4

          by CHARLES O'BRIEN

          -- Nationals closer Sean Doolittle became a favorite at Citi Field after blowing a three-run lead Friday night. Mets fans cheered the All-Star closer when he went to the bullpen Saturday, and on Sunday, they clapped and hollered when his name was announced to pitch the ninth.

          "The fans, they were on me a little bit, and it's all good," Doolittle said.

          Doolittle and the Nationals finally got the last laugh. The left-hander pitched a perfect ninth inning for his 26th save and Washington closed out the Mets for a 7-4 victory Sunday. The Nats had blown five consecutive save chances in Flushing and entered the game with a 6.07 ERA, worst in the National League.

          The Mets ended a season-best eight-game winning streak and lost for the second time in 17 games. That magical run had fans drooling with Doolittle coming out of the bullpen, but the 32-year-old got back on top of his game in time to hold off a rival NL wild-card contender.

          "In a weird way, it relaxed me a little bit," Doolittle said of the cheers. "I'm at my best when I'm able to have a little bit of fun with it in those situations."

          Asdrubal Cabrera hit a tie breaking two-run double against his former team and the Nationals bullpen allowed just one hit over the final three innings. The teams will not play again in New York unless they meet in the postseason. The key three-game series averaged 41,492 fans to create a playoff atmosphere throughout the weekend.

          Nationals star Juan Soto sprained his right ankle on Cabrera's bases-loaded hit in the seventh inning. Soto went from first to third but turned his right ankle after getting a late stop sign from third base coach Bob Henley. He spiked his helmet, was worked on by trainers in the outfield grass, and ultimately came out of the game. X-rays were negative and Soto's considered day to day.

          Victor Robles replaced Soto and homered off All-Star Edwin Diaz in the ninth, and Anthony Rendon had four hits.

          Jeff McNeil had two hits and two RBIs, but New York dropped 1 1/2 games behind Washington for the top NL wild card.

          "We went 6-1 on the homestand," Mets manager Mickey Callaway said. "I don't think you can ask for a better homestand than that."

          Adam Eaton began the seventh-inning rally with a one-out single off Robert Gsellman (2-3). The pesky right fielder moved to second on Rendon's single and advanced to third when McNeil briefly overran the ball.

          After a pitching change, Soto walked to load the bases and Cabrera lined Justin Wilson's first offering into right field to drive in Eaton and Rendon. Soto was tagged out to end the inning.

          Cabrera spent 2 1/2 seasons with the Mets before being traded to Philadelphia in 2018. He opted to sign with Washington instead of returning to New York after being released by Texas.

          "Looking at the waiver wire and the DFAs and we were able to pick up a really good player," manager Dave Martinez said.

          "This team has a lot of talent," Cabrera said. "I'm just here to help the team win."

          The Mets threatened against the beleaguered Washington bullpen in the seventh. McNeil doubled to lead off the inning and moved to third on Amed Rosario's single. Michael Conforto delivered a sacrifice fly to draw the Mets within one, but Daniel Hudson, Wander Suero and Dootlittle combined for 2 1/3 hitless innings to secure the win. Matt Grace (1-2) pitched one-third of an inning to earn the win.

          New York ace Jacob deGrom allowed three unearned runs with seven strikeouts over five innings. He failed to reach the sixth inning for the first time in five starts but lowered his ERA in day games to 1.84, which is the best mark in baseball since at least 1913.

          The Nationals went ahead 3-0 in the first inning on a bizarre bases-loaded error. Cabrera hit a two-out grounder that first baseman Pete Alonso dived to stop, and Alonso threw toward first base. The feed would have hit deGrom in stride, except the pitcher paused momentarily a few feet from the base and then let the ball bounce off his glove. It rolled to near the Mets' on-deck circle, where deGrom chased it down and threw to home plate. Catcher Wilson Ramos dropped the throw, allowing Soto to come in with the third unearned run of the play. Alonso was charged with an error.

          "If I make that play, we're probably still playing baseball," Alonso said. "Really tough pill to swallow."

          TRAINER'S ROOM

          Nationals: RHP Max Scherzer (back) "felt really good" following Saturday's bullpen session, according to Martinez. He is lined up for a simulated game on Tuesday. ... 2B Brian Dozier (rest) was held out of the lineup for the second straight game, although Martinez also noted that Dozier's wife is expecting the couple's first child "any time soon." He flew out as a pinch-hitter in the sixth.

          Mets: There is still no timeframe for a rehab assignment for ailing OF Brandon Nimmo (neck) and IF Jed Lowrie (knee).

          UP NEXT

          Nationals: Washington returns home to open a three-game series against the Cincinnati Reds on Monday. RHP Erick Fedde (2-2, 4.20 ERA) pitches for the Nationals. He's opposed by RHP Anthony DeSclafani (7-6, 4.20 ERA).

          Mets: After a day off, RHP Zack Wheeler (9-6, 4.20 ERA) pitches for New York as the Mets open an important three-game series with the NL East-leading Atlanta Braves. RHP Max Fried (13-4, 4.11 ERA) pitches for the Braves.

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