By HOWIE RUMBERG AP Sports Writer
NEW YORK (AP) _ Steve Lombardozzi made his first big league hit
and RBI count, driving in the go-ahead run in the seventh inning as
the Washington Nationals beat the New York Mets 3-2 on Monday
Starters Ross Detwiler and R.A. Dickey (8-12) were locked in
early, each giving up one hit through four innings that took just
52 minutes. The Nationals took a 1-0 lead in the fifth with help
from Mets third baseman David Wright’s fourth error in three games.
Jayson Werth had three hits and Rick Ankiel and Wilson Ramos
drove in runs for Washington, winners of two straight.
Todd Coffey (5-1) got one out in the sixth, Tyler Clippard
pitched two perfect innings and Drew Storen finished after walking
Wright to start the ninth for his 35th save in 40 chances.
The Mets rallied late for the third straight game only to come
up short again. They have lost five of six.
Detwiler was cruising until he lost the strike zone in he sixth
and walked Justin Turner and Lucas Duda with two outs.
Wright followed with an RBI single and Angel Pagan doubled in
another run with a soft liner down the right field line to tie it
2-all and end Detwiler’s night.
Coffey couldn’t sprint in from the bullpen fast enough, and he
struck out Jason Bay with runners on second and third to end the
inning. Bay, the NL player of the week, had another shot with one
out in the ninth but struck out looking.
The Nationals regained the lead in the top of the seventh but
ran themselves out of a chance to add on.
Ramos walked and advanced on Dickey’s second wild pitch of the
game. He moved up on a groundout, then broke for home on Brian
Bixler’s grounder to short.
Instead of forcing a play at the plate he froze halfway down the
line and was tagged out by Wright. Lombardozzi then lined his first
big league hit, coming in his sixth game. He was 0 for 15 _
including going hitless in three at-bats Monday _ before lining a
clean single to left. Lombardozzi was called up from Triple-A
Syracuse on Tuesday.
As Bixler scored, Lombardozzi was caught in a rundown after
taking too wide a turn and was tagged out by first baseman Duda.
Detwiler appeared to be on the way to his first road win in 12
career road starts over four partial seasons _ the 25-year-old has
received only 17 runs of support when he is in the game over that
stretch. But he only lasted 5 2-3 innings, giving up three hits and
Dickey could not extend his winning streak to a fourth straight
game even though he gave up three runs _ two earned _ in seven
innings. Dickey has not allowed more than three earned runs in 10
Davey Johnson was making his first appearance as a manager at
Citi Field. The skipper of the World Series champion 1986 Mets,
when they played at Shea Stadium, was inducted into the Mets Hall
of Fame in August.
NOTES: The game took 2 hours, 41 minutes. … The Mets held a
news conference to announce a new anti-bullying campaign. Several
players participated in a public service announcement for the
website StopBullying.gov. … Mets longtime public relations
director Jay Horwitz had surgery on his broken right ankle. The
team said he was resting comfortably. … Academy Award-winning
director Ang Lee threw out the ceremonial first pitch on Taiwanese
Heritage Night. … Nationals OF Corey Brown stayed back in
Washington because the team doctors fear he has a staph infection
in his knee. … Mets RHP Dillon Gee (12-6) faces Nationals RHP
Chien-Ming Wang (2-3) on Tuesday _ “Star Wars” night at Citi
(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)