Washington Nationals' strange play helps Mets beat Nats 5-1
- Omar Quintanilla scores for the Mets as Nationals catcher Kurt Suzuki takes the wide throw Saturday, in New York. (AP Photo/Bill Kostroun)
NEW YORK (AP) - Dillon Gee seems to have the right change-of-speed repertoire to defeat the Washington Nationals.
A couple lucky hops always help, too.
Gee beat Washington for the third time this season and the New York Mets scored the go-ahead run when third baseman Ryan Zimmerman and shortstop Ian Desmond made errors on the same strange play for a 5-1 win Saturday.
"Things kind of bounced my way," Gee said.
Daniel Murphy delivered three hits and first baseman Josh Satin started a pair of nifty double plays as the Mets won for the ninth time in 14 games. The Nationals fell back to .500, losing to the team with the worst home record in the majors.
Gee (6-7) gave up one run in six innings, working around six hits and three walks. The right-hander has excelled against Washington, permitting just two runs in 18 2-3 innings this year while accounting for half of his win total.
Gee is 6-1 lifetime against the Nationals - he hasn't beaten any other opponent more than three times.
"I'm not really sure what it is," he said. "I try to keep them off-balance."
Gee also got a nice break in the first.
After Zimmerman walked with two outs, Adam LaRoche followed with a long double that bounced over the right-field fence. Had the ball hit the wall and stayed in play, Zimmerman could've scored. Instead, Zimmerman had to stop at third base and Jayson Werth struck out to end the threat.
Gee reported no problem from forearm trouble that's come and gone all season. Manager Terry Collins said the Mets might rejigger their rotation around the All-Star break to give him more time in-betweeb starts.
Taylor Jordan (0-1) lasted 4 1-3 innings in his big league debut. He was promoted from Double-A earlier in the day and gave up three runs, although a pair of errors by Zimmerman helped make two of them unearned.
"He pitched his butt off, and we didn't help him out much," Desmond said.
It was 1-all in the fifth when Murphy led off with a single and took second on a groundout. Marlon Byrd followed with a hard bouncer that handcuffed Zimmerman and deflected in the air, where Desmond alertly caught the ball with his bare hand on the edge of the outfield grass.
But Desmond tried an off-balance throw to get Murphy at third, and he skipped an awkward toss. The ball hit Murphy in the hip and skittered away, and he hustled home and slid in ahead of Zimmerman's throw. Kirk Nieuwenhuis added a sacrifice fly for a 3-1 lead.
"When I saw the ball go off Zimmerman, I was thinking about scoring," Murphy said. "Then I saw Desi get it, and I had to make sure he didn't drop one on the bag and get me out. Once it got loose, I took off."
A day earlier, Desmond made a bad throw to first that stopped his 59-game errorless string. This time, he threw behind the runner.
"I have been playing aggressive, trying to backdoor guys like that," Desmond said. "I think that one just didn't work out. If it doesn't hit his body, the ball just sits there and nothing happens."
Eric Young Jr. had a sacrifice fly, and Byrd hit an RBI single in the sixth.
Carlos Torres pitched two innings, and LaTroy Hawkins went the ninth to close it out for the Mets, a day after their bullpen blew a late 4-1 lead for starter Matt Harvey.
The 24-year-old Jordan earned his promotion after going a combined 9-1 with a 1.00 ERA in Double-A and Class A this year. Murphy singled with two outs in the third for the Mets' first hits.
Jordan gave up five hits, walked two, hit a batter and struck out one. He also collected a couple of souvenirs - the ball for fanning Gee for his first strikeout, and another ball after he lined a single up the middle for his first big league hit.
Jordan hit 95 mph on the stadium radar gun, featuring a delivery where he whips the ball behind his back and then slings it to the plate. The right-hander is in the rotation while struggling Dan Haren is on the disabled list, and will soon be back at Citi Field - he's been picked the represent the Nationals in the All-Star Futures game in two weeks.
NOTES: Washington tied a season high with three errors. ... Nationals LHP Ross Detwiler had stiffness in his lower back after Friday night's start. He was on the disabled list earlier this season for a strain in his back. Manager Davey Johnson says that if Detwiler can't make his next start, RHP Ross Ohlendorf will fill in. ... Mets rookie RHP Zack Wheeler (1-0, 3.18) makes his home debut Sunday vs. LHP Gio Gonzalez (4-3, 3.31). "The future is right around the corner," Collins said. ... Omar Quintanilla singled to end an 0-for-17 rut and later doubled for the Mets. ... Satin is 8 for 17 during a five-game hitting streak.
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