The Nationals beat the Mets 8-2 in a game that went ten innings. Jordan Zimmerman went six strong innings for the Nats, only giving up one run on a home run from David Wright. Chris Young threw seven innings for the Mets, only giving up two runs on a home run to Bryce Harper in the first inning. Both starters gave their team a quality start.
Neither team did much against the other starter. Young did not give up a hit after the first inning. Zimmerman scattered four hits over his six innings, one of which was the home run to Wright. Zimmerman was assisted by some excellent defense. The Nats infield turned two double plays and Ryan Zimmerman was his usual gold glove self at third. In the bottom of the sixth inning, Ryan made an incredible play to throw out Jordany Valdespin running for first base for the third out of the inning, and David Wright on deck.
The score was 2-1 in favor of the Nats in the bottom of the seventh, when Drew Storen got the call to replace Zimmerman. Storen faced David Wright, the toughest out in the Mets lineup, and got a fly ball out. Davey Johnson elected to go to reliever Michael Gonzalez to get the left handed batter Ike Davis. Gonzalez gave up a home run to Davis on the first pitch he threw, tying the score and making Zimmerman’s start a no decision. Daniel Murphy hit a single and got to second on a passed ball, but Gonzalez struck out Jason Bay and Andres Torres to end the inning.
Gonzalez pitched to one batter in the eighth, and was replaced by Ryan Mattheus, who got two outs to end the inning and came out for the first batter in the ninth–David Wright. Mattheus induced Wright to hit a fly ball to center. Tom Gorzelanny then finished the rest of the ninth. Gorzelanny struck out Ike Davis, then gave up a double to Daniel Murphy. Jason Bay hit a ball sharply to the hole between third and short, but Ryan Zimmerman made a great play on the ball to throw out Bay at first. If Zimmerman had not made the play, the ball game would have been over because Murphy would have scored from second.
Tim Byrdak started as the pitcher for the Mets in the top of the tenth. Bernadina hit a single to short left field. Sandy Leon hit a routine ground ball which should have been a double play, but Ruben Tejada dropped the ball at second base, so both runners were safe. The Mets elected to bring in Pedro Beato to pitch at that point, and the fun really started for the Nats. Mark DeRosa attempted to bunt the runners over, but the bunt was too short. Beato fielded the ball and threw to third to get the out on Bernadina. With runners at first and second, Steve Lonbardozzi singled to load the bases. Harper crushed a single to right that scored Leon and put the Nats ahead with the bases still loaded.
Ryan Zimmerman hit a bases clearing double. Michael Morse piled on with a two run homer, his first hit of the game. Beato walked Gorzelanny and his night was done. The Mets brought in Elvin Ramirez to put out the fire. He struck out Danny Espinosa and got Bernadina to hit a come-backer to the pitcher for the final out of the inning. The Nats lead 8-2. Gorzelanny started the bottom of the tenth by walking Andres Torres, but got the double play ball from Ronny Cedeno and the final out by getting Justin Turner to fly out to left. Gorzelanny vultured the win.
Champ of the Game: For the Nats this is a tie between two players. Bryce Harper had three RBI’s in the game, which were actually all of the runs the Nationals needed. He came through in the tenth to get the team the win. Ryan Zimmerman’s bases clearing double gave the team the breathing room they needed in the tenth to seal the win. Ryan also had two excellent defensive plays during the game, one of which saved a run. If he had not made the play on the Jason Bay ground ball, the Mets would have won the game in the bottom of the ninth.
For the Mets, their champ was Chris Young, who pitched seven innings and did not allow a hit by the Nats after the first inning.
Chump of the Game: Michael Gonzalez. Yes, every pitcher gives up a home run in a critical situation now and then. But when you throw a high, out of the zone fastball to Ike Davis you are asking for trouble. Ike Davis can handle pitches high and low out of the zone. It’s the stuff in the strike zone that gives him problems. Gonzalez should have known his opponent since the Nats just got done playing a series against this team last week. That hit took the potential win away from Jordan Zimmerman, who pitched six good innings and ended up with a no decision.
Jordany Valdespin and Pedro Beato share this for the Mets. Valdespin ground into two double plays, went 0 for 1 with a runner in scoring position and grounded out. His 0-4 night cost the Mets dearly. Beato allowed two inherited runners to score and gave up four runs of his own in the tenth inning, and then walked Gorzelanny to end his night.
Unsung Hero: Danny Espinosa. He went 1-3 at the plate, but his contribution in this game was on the field. He made a fine play at short to get to a ball hit sharply by Ruben Tejada and kept it to a single. If that ball had gotten past him it would have been at least a double. Espinosa played a very smooth short in this game and appears to be working well with Lombardozzi.