Mets' Gee stops Nationals again

The SportsXchange

WASHINGTON - New York Mets starting pitcher Dillon Gee made only three mistakes Friday night and one of those didn't hurt him on the scoreboard in the Mets' 3-2 win over the Washington Nationals.

He gave up solo home runs to Wilson Ramos and pinch-hitter Steve Lombardozzi and lost track of the count while striking out Ian Desmond in the seventh.

"I felt like an idiot out there. I just forgot," said Gee, who improved to 10-9 with his fourth win over the Nationals this season. Gee faked an injury after he lost track of the count. "It was a disaster," he said.

It was just the sixth loss in the last 20 games for Washington (68-66), which was trying to get to four games above .500 for the first time since July 7. The Mets (61-72) had lost six of their previous eight.

"I am trying to go nine (innings) every time out there," Gee said. "I want to give the team a chance to win."

LaTroy Hawkins came on in the ninth and got his sixth save for New York as he retired Jayson Werth, Desmond and Adam LaRoche in order. LaRoche was called out on strikes to end the game.

"He mixes up his stuff a lot," Desmond said of Gee, who gave up two earned runs with one walk and three strikeouts in 7 2/3 innings. "He turned it up a notch. He is a good pitcher. He doesn't blow up the radar gun."

"He pitched a great game," Mets' manager Terry Collins said of Gee. "He can get some swings and misses. Dillon Gee knows how to pitch."

The Mets got a two-run homer from Ike Davis in the fourth and added an insurance run in the eighth as Daniel Murphy doubled and scored on a two-out infield hit by Andrew Brown to make the score 3-1.

"That is a heads up baserunning play," Collins said.

Washington's Lombardozzi hit a solo pinch-hit homer in the eighth against Gee to pull the Nationals to within one run at 3-2. It was the first pinch-hit homer of Lombardozzi's career.

Gee entered the game with a mark of 3-1 and an ERA of 2.10 in four previous starts this year against Washington. He did give up three homers in his last start in Washington on July 27.

Left-hander Scott Rice relieved Gee with two outs in the eighth and Bryce Harper at the plate. Rice got Harper to ground out on a ball bobbled by Murphy, who easily threw out a slow-running Harper.

"He hasn't been fazed," Collins said of Rice, who spent several years in the minor leagues before making it to the majors. "To get here you are not going to be fazed. He made a good pitch" to get out Harper.

Desmond stopped short of blasting Harper for not running out the grounder against Rice. "He is 20 years old," noted Desmond.

Washington starter Jordan Zimmermann (15-8) was taken out in the eighth after Brown's RBI hit.

Davis' two-run homer to left in the fourth gave the Mets a 2-0. It was the ninth homer of the season for Davis, who entered the game with a .204 batting average.

Ramos had given the Nationals a 1-0 lead in the third with a homer against Gee. It was also the ninth homer of the season for Ramos, who missed 44 games with a left hamstring injury before coming off the disabled list on July 4.

Mets catcher Travis d'Arnaud led off the fifth with a double in the alley in left-center field, but Zimmermann retired the next three batters.

Washington manager Davey Johnson became light headed during the game and headed to the clubhouse. Bench coach Randy Knorr took over for Johnson in about the fourth inning.

"He is fine," Knorr said. "He got a little light headed. He may be catching a cold or something."

NOTES: Johnson said before the game that Ross Ohlendorf will start Sunday against the Mets and Stephen Strasburg will go Monday at Philadelphia. Strasburg pitched just two innings because of a rain delay on Tuesday and Johnson had considered having Strasburg start Sunday. ... This is the last home series for Johnson against the Mets, the team he led to the 1986 World Series title. ... Pitcher Vic Black was acquired by the Mets as the player to be named in the Aug. 27 deal that sent Marlon Byrd and John Buck to the Pittsburgh Pirates. ... Brown began Friday with 10 RBIs in August, the most RBIs in any calendar month in his career. ... Davis and Werth of the Nationals are among the leaders in on-base percentage during August in the National League.
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