The New York Mets (12-4) dropped their second straight game to the Washington Nationals (9-9) by a score of 5-2 on Tuesday night at Citi Field.
Zack Wheeler made his second start of the season on Tuesday night against the Nationals. In the first, he worked his way into and out of trouble.
Trea Turner led off the game with a double to deep center. Wheeler then walked both Bryce Harper and Ryan Zimmerman to load the bases with one out. However, he was able to get Moises Sierra to roll into a 6-4-3 double play to get out of the inning unscathed.
Wheeler bounced back in the second with a quick 1-2-3 second inning. In the third, Trea Turner created the Nationals first run of the game. After he singled with one out, he went first to third on a Howie Kendrick single. Turner then came in to score on a Bryce Harper sacrifice fly.
Wheeler was hurt by some soft hits in the fourth inning. After a leadoff single and a walk, a flare single off the bat of Wilmer Difo increased the lead to 2-0. A batter later, Pedro Severino made it 3-0 with a soft RBI single of his own.
The righty worked around yet another soft two-out single in a scoreless fifth inning. He finished his night retiring the Nationals in order in the sixth. His final line was six innings pitched with seven hits, three earned runs, three walks, and two strikeouts on 99 pitches.
The running game killed the Mets again in the seventh. After Robert Gsellman walked Trea Turner leading off the inning, he proceeded to steal second. Turner then scored on a Ryan Zimmerman single, giving the Nats a 4-2 lead.
Again in the eighth, the Mets inability to control the running game burned them. Michael Taylor led off the inning with a single, and two pitches later he stole second. After advancing to third on a sacrifice bunt, Taylor scored on a Severino groundout to make it 5-2 Washington.
Gerson Bautista worked around a leadoff double in his major league debut. He struck out Ryan Zimmerman on a 97 MPH fastball.
The Mets threatened in the bottom of the third after the Nationals took a 1-0 lead. Zack Wheeler led off the inning with a single and Asdrubal Cabrera drew a one-out walk. However, Wheeler was stranded at third after Cespedes reached on a fielder’s choice and Flores grounded out.
Wheeler led off the fifth with his second hit of the game, which Amed Rosario then followed up with a double that advanced Wheeler to third. Wheeler came in to score the Mets first run of the game on an Asdrubal Cabrera sacrifice fly. Rosario then scored on a Cespedes groundout, cutting the lead to 3-2.
The Mets wasted a huge chance in the sixth. Juan Lagares picked up his second hit of the game with a one-out single. He went first to third as Tomas Nido snuck a single past Zimmerman. However, a Jose Reyes strikeout and an Amed Rosario pop out stranded them there.
Cespedes’ and Flores’s singles set up runners on the corners with one out in the seventh. For the second straight inning, the chance was squandered as Todd Frazier and Jay Bruce both struck out.
The Mets stranded another runner in scoring position in the eighth as Asdrubal Cabrera struck out with Michael Conforto and Rosario on first and second.
The Mets went an ugly 0-for-9 with runners in scoring position on the night.
Steven Matz will battle with Tanner Roark as the Mets looking to avoid the series sweep at the hands of the Washington Nationals. First pitch is scheduled for 7:10 p.m. at Citi Field, the game can be seen on SNY and heard on 710 WOR.