New York-The New York Mets were simply bad in last night's game against the Washington Nationals. The Mets were bad both on the mound and at the plate, and that combination is never a good one. The Nationals took full advantage of the lifeless Mets, cruising behind Gio Gonzalez's near no hitter to a 9-0 rout.
Carlos Torres (3-4, 3.53 ERA) got off to a rough start as Denard Span homered to lead off the game, giving Washington a 1-0 lead. The long ball would become a theme for the Nats, who saw Ryan Zimmerman add a solo shot of his own off Torres in the frame to push the Washington lead to 2-0. Zimmerman's home run was his 21st of the season. The long ball barrage continued in the third, when Jayson Werth crushed his 22nd home run of the year. The three run shot stretched the Atlanta lead to 5-0. Nationals' left fielder Tyler Moore joined the party in the fourth, cranking a solo shot off Torres out to dead center, making it 6-0. Torres' day was done after four innings, and he allowed six runs on five hits and four walks while striking out only two. The worst number for Torres, however, was the four home runs he surrendered.
The Nats weren't done yet, however, as Met killer Wilson Ramos added a three run homer of his own off reliever Greg Burke to blow the game away at 9-0. The run support was plenty for Nationals' starter Gio Gonzalez (10-6, 3.31 ERA). Gonzalez dominated a lifeless Mets' lineup all night and carried a no hitter into the seventh inning. The Mets broke up the no-no when pinch hitter Zach Lutz singled, but that was the only offense the Mets could muster the whole night. Gonzalez went the distance, tossing a one hit shutout and striking out eight Mets for good measure.
The game as a whole was bad for the Mets, who looked like a minor league team last night. The Mets clearly miss David Wright, but having him return will not be enough for this team to improve offensively next season. The Mets need, at worst, two other quality major league hitters in their lineup besides Wright to contend for 2014. The good news, as MetsBlog.com points out, is that the Mets are now in line for a protected draft pick this offseason. That means the Mets can add a free agent hitter without losing a first round draft pick if the current standings hold, a dilemma that caused the team to miss out on Michael Bourn last winter.
Player of the Game:
Today's Player of the Game award goes to Nationals' pitcher Gio Gonzalez. Gonzalez toyed with a very weak Mets' lineup and picked up a complete game shutout to keep Washington's slim postseason hopes alive.
Post Game Notes:
- Denard Span extended his hitting streak to 20 games with his home run in the first inning. Span, who went 3 for 5 with two runs scored, now has the longest active hitting streak in the major leagues.
- Zimmerman and Moore each collected two hits for Washington.
- The Mets drew 20,174 fans to Citi Field last night. In comparison, the US Open drew over 22,000 fans right across the street to see last night's men's final between Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic.
The Mets and Nats will continue their four game set tonight at 7:10 pm at Citi Field. Dillon Gee (11-9, 3.53 ERA) will take the mound for the Mets, while Washington will send righty Jordan Zimmermann (16-8, 3.30 ERA) to the hill.
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