Steven Matz turned in another dominating performance which led to his seventh consecutive win and a 2-0 Mets victory over the Nationals on Wednesday afternoon at Nationals Park. >> Read the full AP recap at SNY.TV.
In case you missed it…
- Matz retired 17 of the last 18 batters he faced and allowed just four hits and one walk while striking out seven in a season-high eight innings. He ended his outing by retiring Bryce Harper, who pinch hit as the tying run with two outs in the bottom of the eighth. Over his last seven starts, Matz is 7-0 with a 1.13 ERA with 49 strikeouts in 48 innings.
- David Wright hit a solo home run in the first off Nationals starter Tanner Roark to give Matz a quick lead. It was the sixth homer of the year and second in as many games for Wright, who has now hit in five straight.
- Rene Rivera singled home an important insurance run in the seventh when Daniel Murphy let a potential inning-ending double-play grounder go through his legs. The error put runners at the corners with one out.
- Jeurys Familia made things interesting in the ninth, allowing consecutive singles to Jayson Werth and Daniel Murphy to open the inning. The Mets' closer rebounded to retire the next three batters for his 16th save.
- Asdrubal Cabrera was in the starting lineup but did not take the field in the bottom of the first due to back spasms. Matt Reynolds took his spot and collected his first Major League hit, a single, in the fifth inning.
Michael Avallone, SNY.TV | Twitter
Steven Matz has quickly elevated himself into one of the top left-handers in the game and he showed why again on Wednesday. For the second consecutive start, the left-hander followed the circus of a poor Matt Harvey outing to turn the attention back to the primary goal: winning. Basically using just a fastball and changeup, Matz induced a lot of soft contact and kept the Nationals off balance the entire game. Although not as heralded as his fellow rotation mates, Matz has easily been New York's most consistent starter behind Noah Syndergaard and outside of a disastrous first start of the year, has been one of the best starting pitchers in baseball.
For the club on the whole, it was a nice series to win, especially with all of the negative vibes coming off of Harvey's continued struggles on Tuesday night. After dropping the final two games of last week's series to the Nats in New York, it was a great sign for the club to return the favor at Nationals Park. The offense has largely scuffled this month, scoring more than five runs just twice in the last three weeks, but the pitching - sans Harvey - has seemed to again settle in, which is what this team ultimately needs to succeed.
- Terry Collins on Matz: "He's just got great confidence in the command of his stuff … Now it's a matter of making sure his health stays to the point where he can be consistent in going to the mound because I think he has a chance to win a lot of games … I think he thinks he belongs here…he's not afraid of the challenge."
- Collins on the series win: "It's big. They've got a great team and they're playing good. Especially after they just beat us two out of three at home, to come in here and win the series is huge, but we had to really pitch to do it … When you play the Nats you better be good. They've got too much firepower…so you've got to go out and pitch well and Steven did it … We'll take the two games and get ready for the Dodgers."
- Matz on his start: "I just feel really comfortable on the mound … It was a great series, to take two games from these guys, they're a really tough team, so it was fun."
News and notes…
- The Mets have won five of their last six and improved to 8-4 in their last 12 games at Nationals Park.
- New York has outhomered the opposition 66-32, the best differential in the Majors.
- Matz is the first Mets pitcher to win seven consecutive starts since Steve Trachsel in 2006.
After an off-day on Thursday, the Mets (27-19) return home to face the Dodgers (24-23) for a three-game series beginning Friday at Citi Field at 7:10 p.m. ET on SNY. Jacob deGrom (3-1, 3.07 ERA) will start the opener looking to snap a three-start winless streak. He will face Los Angeles southpaw Alex Wood (1-3, 4.03 ERA).