By BENJAMIN STANDIG
WASHINGTON (AP) _ Jayson Werth’s two-out RBI double in the eighth inning capped a late rally and the Washington Nationals avoided a series sweep with a 6-5 win over the New York Mets on Sunday night.
The Nationals trailed 5-2 entering the seventh, but scored once in that inning on Wilson Ramos’ run-scoring single and added three in the eighth.
The victory moved Washington within 61/2 games of Cincinnati for the final National League wild card berth. The Reds lost at Colorado 7-4 on Sunday.
Recalled from Triple-A Syracuse before the game, reliever Erik Davis (1-0) pitched a scoreless eighth.
Rafael Soriano, Washington’s sixth pitcher, finished the Mets off in the ninth for his 36th save.
Gonzalez Germen (1-2) allowed one run after Scott Rice gave up two in the eighth.
Daniel Murphy and Lucas Duda each drove in two runs, and Matt de Dekker smacked his first career home run for the Mets. New York last swept a series from Washington May 25-27, 2009.
Rice entered in the eighth with the Mets leading 5-3. Rice, New York’s third pitcher, allowed consecutive singles including Denard Span’s pinch-hit single which extended the outfielder’s hitting streak to 15 games.
After Bryce Harper sacrificed the runners to second and third, Scott Hairston scored on Anthony Rendon’s groundout and Span came around on Ryan Zimmerman’s infield single.
Werth’s second double of the game scored Zimmerman from first base and was one of Washington’s 16 hits.
Murphy’s hot hitting stretch continued with an RBI double in the first inning and a two-out run-scoring single in the fifth against Ross Ohlendorf.
The Mets had 30 hits during the past two games.
Mets starter Jonathon Niese never had a 1-2-3 inning, but the Nationals managed only single runs in the second and fourth against him. He allowed two runs and 10 hits in 5 2-3 innings.
Scott Atchison replaced Niese with two outs in the sixth and stranded two inherited runners.
Ramos’ RBI single against Atchison in the seventh made it 5-3.
Murphy followed Eric Young’s leadoff double with a two-base hit for New York’s first run and scored one out later on Duda’s single.
Another RBI single from Duda, who started for the injured Ike Davis at first base, made it 5-2 in the seventh.
New York went ahead 3-0 as de Dekker’s first major league home run landed in the second deck of the right-center field stands.
Ross Ohlendorf pitched five innings, allowing four runs and nine hits. He had a 2.82 ERA in four previous starts this season.
Notes: Zimmerman had three hits. …The Mets called up three players, including RHP Vic Black, who was acquired on Aug. 27 from the Pirates in a deal that sent OF Marlon Byrd and C John Buck to Pittsburgh. … RHP Daisuke Matsuzaka (0-2, 8.68 ERA) opposes Paul Maholm (9-10, 4.37) as New York opens a three-game series at Atlanta on Monday. … Washington plays at Philadelphia on Monday as RHP Stephen Strasburg (6-9, 2.96 ERA) faces LHP Cole Hamels (6-13, 3.58 ERA).
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