Conforto Powers Mets Over Nats

Michael Conforto mashed two homeruns in the Mets 5-3 win over the Nationals. The Nationals had just completed a 9-1 road trip and the Mets were floundering at 8-13 with a six game losing streak entering this series, but it is the Mets who look like the better team after the first two games resulted in wins. The Nationals had the opportunity to bury the Mets, but now it is the Mets who have shown some life.

The Nationals were playing without Adam Eaton and will probably have to do so for the rest of the year, a torn ACL on Friday leaving him done for the season. That leaves a big hole in centerfield if Michael Taylor does not hit. Taylor started the game off with a bang by doubling over the head of Curtis Granderson in the first inning. Granderson broke late for the ball looking like a deer staring at the headlights of a car coming right at him. After a Bryce Harper whiff on a slow curve ball Ryan Zimmerman salvaged the inning with a line drive single into left center to give the Nationals a 1-0 lead.

The way Strasburg was pitching the one run appeared enough to win the game. Michael Conforto and Zack Wheeler were the only Mets to get hits in the first four innings. The fifth inning Jose Reyes started with a broken bat single into right field. T.J. Rivera powered a ball into the left centerfield gap for a double, Reyes stopping at third. Daniel Murphy made a heads up play on a Travis d’Arnaud grounder. He threw to third to get T.J. Rivera out, but Reyes scored to tie the game. A bunt by Wheeler advanced d’Arnaud to second. Michael Conforto got ahead of Strasburg 3-1 then blasted a meat ball pitch into the right field bleachers to break the tie and give the Mets a 3-1 lead.

Wheeler could not survive the fifth, denying himself the victory. A Jose Reyes error at third put a runner on and Michael Taylor got his third hit of the game by squeezing a pitch past the glove of Reyes to put two runners on. Bryce grounded into a 1-6-3 double play, but Zimmerman again saved the day by beating out a slow roller to short to score Trea Turner. If myworld had a stop watch we could swear Zimmerman went down the first base line faster than Harper did when he grounded into a double play.

Michael Conforto got his first hit against a lefthander in the game. Enny Romero and his 99 mile per hour fastball was the victim with Conforto blasting it at 101 into the Mets bullpen, the ball caught by Addison Reed who was warming up.

The Nationals got a run back in their half of the inning with Ryan Zimmerman crushing a ball over the left field bullpen. Jayson Werth hit a two out double. Matt Wieters pinch hit for Jose Lobaton and skied a ball into right field for the third out.

Jose Reyes gave the Mets an insurance run. His fielding has been ugly and he came into the game batting under .150. His second hit of the game came off Shawn Kelley, a two out blast into the right field bleachers, almost in the same spot Conforto hit his first homerun. That about broke the spirit of the Nationals who were retired in order by Jeurys Familia for his first save of the year.

Game Notes: Michael Taylor started out strong with hits in his first three at bats. His last two at bats were filled with swings and misses as he struck out twice. The three hits got his average above .200 but the two whiffs brought it back down to .192…Rafael Bautista was brought up to replace Adam Eaton. He may see some playing time in centerfield if Taylor struggles to provide any offense. The Nationals need a closer and now with Eaton out for the year they may also need a centerfielder…Bryce Harper had a rough day with three whiffs and a ground into double play. Two of the whiffs were swings and misses at 72 mile per hour curveballs. The other whiff was taking a 94 mile per hour fastball. Yesterday he also had a three whiff game and a bases loaded game ending double play ground out…Enny Romero hit 100 twice with his pitches….Jayson Werth made a poor decision after stealing second. When the ball skipped past second and rolled into centerfield he tried to advance to third thinking he had gotten it on a obstruction call. He was easily thrown out at third and at the discretion of the second base umpire he was not entitled to third.

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