By BEN WALKER AP Baseball Writer
NEW YORK (AP) _ Ian Desmond doubled home the go-ahead run in the ninth inning and the Washington Nationals rallied late after a dominant Matt Harvey departed, overtaking the New York Mets 6-4 Friday night.
Harvey struck out 11 and left with a 4-1 lead after seven innings. It was the latest gem for a pitcher who could start the All-Star game on the same Citi Field mound next month.
Ryan Zimmerman lined a three-run double with two outs in the eighth that made it 4-all. The Mets used four relievers in the inning, and still couldn’t protect the lead.
Jayson Werth, who had struck out in all three at-bats against Harvey, hustled for a leadoff double in the ninth against closer Bobby Parnell (5-4). Desmond doubled down the right-field line and later scored on a sacrifice fly by Kurt Suzuki.
Tyler Clippard (6-1) won in the relief and Drew Storen got his second save.
The Mets lost after arriving back in New York at 4:30 a.m. after a one-day trip to Denver for a makeup game caused by an April snowout. Harvey, however, had flown back home from Chicago on Wednesday night to rest up, and he was plenty ready.
Harvey retired the first 14 batters before Desmond homered with two outs in the fifth. The right-hander permitted just three hits, raised his NL-leading strikeout total to 132, dropped his league-best ERA to 2.00 and didn’t issue a walk.
Josh Satin doubled twice, singled and drove in two runs for the Mets.
A crowd of 28,363 turned out to see the team with worst home record in the majors. But there’s a different buzz when Harvey pitches, and fans quickly began clapping in hopes of a strikeout when leadoff man Denard Span fell into an 0-2 hole. Harvey fanned him, too.
Harvey’s fastball hit 99 mph on a wet evening.
Desmond’s 14th homer came an inning after his error gave the Mets a lead.
David Wright lined a double off Zimmerman’s glove at third base to open the fourth and Marlon Byrd followed with a grounder that Desmond bobbled and threw away, ending the shortstop’s 59-game errorless streak and allowing Wright to score.
Desmond lofted a long fly over the left-field wall with two outs in the fifth, tying it at 1.
The Mets scored twice in the fifth when Byrd hit an RBI double and Satin singled home a run off Ross Detwiler. Satin’s RBI double in the seventh made it 4-1.
NOTES: Mets RHP Zack Wheeler will make his home debut Sunday, with lots of family in attendance. Manager Terry Collins said the rookie and pitching coach Dan Warthen had worked on a few things to make Wheeler more comfortable on the mound. Wheeler certainly sounded unfazed as he settled in at Citi Field. “Big league clubhouse, big league field,” he said. … The Nationals are expected to promote RHP Taylor Jordan from Double-A Harrisburg to make his big league debut Saturday. He is 9-1 with a 1.00 ERA in Double-A and Class-A this season, and has been picked for the All-Star Futures Game at Citi Field next month. Manager Davey Johnson said he thought Jordan would get at least two-three starts in the majors. … OF Bryce Harper (left knee bursitis) is on track to rejoin the Nationals when they host Milwaukee on Monday. … Satin’s three hits were a career high. … Detwiler is winless in four starts since going on the disabled list because of a back strain.
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