Espinosa, LaRoche Lift Nats Past Mets, 7-1


Aug 6, 2014; Washington, DC, USA; Washington Nationals second baseman Danny Espinosa (8) turns a double play over New York Mets first baseman Lucas Duda (21) in the second inning at Nationals Park. Mandatory Credit: Evan Habeeb-USA TODAY Sports

The Nationals dominated in all phases of the game Wednesday night as the bats spotted Doug Fister (11-3) an early three run lead while the gloves turned nearly every hard hit ball into an out, and the Nats beat the Mets 7-1.

Jayson Werth’s bloop single in the first scored Anthony Rendon for the game’s first run, and then Adam LaRoche made it 3-0 with his 14th home run of the season, a blast to right center that caromed off the second-deck façade. Danny Espinosa, starting at second for the first time since the Asdrubal Cabrera trade, made it 6-0 in the sixth by hitting a three-run home run, his seventh homer on the year.

The six runs were more than enough for Fister who tossed 7 1/3 innings while allowing just one unearned run on six hits and struck out seven. Fister has now gone at least seven innings in each of his last three starts and five of his last six.

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The Mets scored their lone run in the eighth when Daniel Murphy’s infield single brought home Juan Lagares. LaRoche gave the Nats their seventh run with his second home run on the night in the bottom of the inning. It was the first time since July 13that the Nats have hit two or more home runs in the same game.

Even when the Mets did make solid contact on Fister’s pitches, the Nationals defense proved too good on this night. Werth made a sliding catch in the first on a weak pop fly; Rendon started two sharply hit balls into double-plays, and LaRoche made a diving play on a sharply hit ground ball in the seventh.

Opposing Fister, Jonathan Niese (5-8) didn’t have nearly the same success. He finished his night after six innings with six runs allowed on eight hits and two walks while striking out two.

Matt Thornton debuted with the Nats, finishing up the eighth while Ross Detwiler pitched the ninth.

Denard Span went 1-for-4 on the night, extending his streak of consecutive games where he’s reached base by either a hit or a walk to 32. Rendon went 2-for-4 with two doubles, giving him 31 on the season. LaRoche finished 2-for-4, as he and Espinosa both drove in three runs.

With the Braves losing their eighth game in a row earlier in the afternoon, the Nats are now four games up in the East. The Nats begin a three game series with the Braves on Friday after the conclusion of the Mets series.

The Nats look to win the series tomorrow afternoon with Jordan Zimmermann (7-5) pitching against Jacob deGrom (6-5).