Mets in position for series sweep against Nationals
The Mets (6-1), winners of four straight, will be looking for their first three-game sweep at Nationals Park since Sept. 7-9, 2015, when New York went on to win the division and the National League title.
Harvey enjoyed a strong start to what could be his final season in a Mets uniform. On a cold Monday night at Citi Field, he allowed one hit in five scoreless innings against the Philadelphia Phillies.
“He’s got that look in his eye back,” Mets catcher Travis d’Arnaud told The New York Times after Harvey’s debut, later adding: “He didn’t have his best stuff, but he was still in it. He wasn’t going to give up.”
Harvey is 3-6 with a 3.16 ERA in 15 games (14 starts) versus Washington in his career, and 0-3 with a 7.25 ERA in five games against them the past two seasons.
Roark went seven innings, allowing a run, four hits and a walk in beating the Atlanta Braves on Monday night. He is 7-2 with a 2.76 ERA in 17 games (11 starts) against the Mets.
The Mets set up the sweep opportunity when they rallied twice from a run down to take Saturday’s matinee 3-2 behind a five-out save from closer Jeurys Familia.
“There was no second thoughts,” Mets manager Mickey Callaway said of going to Familia with one on and one out in the eighth.
“Those are the batters he was supposed to face,” Callaway said. “We were going to win or lose in the ninth with him. … And if Familia has to be down (Sunday), he will be.”
New York used heady baserunning to push across the go-ahead run. With runners on first and third and one out in the seventh, Michael Conforto attempted to steal second, turning Todd Frazier’s grounder into a run-scoring out at first instead of a double play.
“We’ve been doing really well,” Frazier said. “People always talk about ‘man its early, or ‘you need these games late.’ We need every game. That’s a blunt way of putting it.”
Bryce Harper clubbed his fifth homer of the season for Washington, which lost Anthony Rendon and manager Dave Martinez after Rendon was called out on strikes for the second time in the game in the third inning.
Rendon flipped his bat but did not appear to say anything to home plate umpire Marty Foster before his ejection.
“It’s pretty frustrating to say the least,” Rendon told MLB.com regarding the strike calls, “especially when you’re taking at-bats away from guys.”
Washington (4-4) has lost four straight, matching its longest losing streak from last season.
“This will turn around,” Martinez told The Washington Post. “One big hit here or there, and we explode.”
Martinez, who picked up his first ejection in his eighth game as a manager, received praise for his vehement defense of Rendon.
“Awesome,” Harper told thesportscapital.com. “That’s what it’s all about … and he’s a manager that you want to fight for, you want to win for, and just the little things he does that makes you want to run through a wall for him.”
Zimmerman went 0-for-4, and is hitting .115.
Washington stole five bases against Mets, who have yet to throw out a runner trying to steal.
“We don’t want guys just running at will on us, so we’ll continue to try and improve,” Callaway said.
Harvey has dominated Harper (2-for-29 with a homer) in his career. Rendon is 9-for-23 with a homer against Harvey and Zimmerman is 6-for-23 with two home runs.