Game Recap: The Dark Knight outlasts Max Scherzer; Mets defeat Nationals 4-0


The Mets and Nationals played game two of their weekend series on Friday, featuring the highly anticipated pitching match-up between Washington’s Max Scherzer versus the Dark Knight of Flushing, Matt Harvey.

Michael Cuddyer‘s 4th inning solo home run was the difference through 7 innings of play.

Terry Collins then handed a 1-0 lead over to the bullpen in the 8th inning.

A misplay by Jayson Werth led to three Mets runs in the bottom of the frame.

May 1, 2015; New York City, NY, USA;New York Mets starting pitcher

Matt Harvey

(33) reacts after the final out in top of the seventh inning against the Washington Nationals at Citi Field. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports

Jeurys Familia recorded a 5-out save to seal the Mets third victory over the Nationals this season.

Mets Starting Lineup:

1) Curtis Granderson – RF; 2) Juan Lagares – CF; 3) Lucas Duda – 1B; 4) Michael Cuddyer – LF; 5) Daniel Murphy – 3B 6) Wilmer Flores – SS; 7) Dilson Herrera – 2B; 8) Kevin Plawecki – C; 9) Matt Harvey – SP

Game Recap:

The Nationals managed two infield hits off Matt Harvey their first time through the line-up.

With 2-outs in the top of the 3rd, center fielder Michael Taylor hit a 2-out double down the right field line, but was left stranded.

  • Through his first 3 innings pitched, Harvey threw 42 pitches, with 28 (67%) going for strikes.  He issued no walks and fanned a pair.

Dilson Herrera became the Mets first base runner leading off the 3rd, after getting hit on the elbow by a Scherzer fastball.  With 1-out, Matt Harvey successfully bunted him over to second.  Curtis Granderson followed with a base on balls.  Next, Juan Lagares flailed at strike three to end the Mets threat.

  • Through his first 3 innings pitched for the Nats, Max Scherzer threw 40 pitches, with 25 (63%) going for strikes.  He allowed no hits, walked one, and fanned 3 batters.

With 2-outs in the 4th, first baseman Ryan Zimmerman hit a long double over the head of Juan Lagares, and off the base of the center field wall.  But, just as in the 3rd inning, the base runner was left stranded.

With 1-out in the bottom of the 4th, Michael Cuddyer launched a fastball over the right/center field wall to open the scoring.  Daniel Murphy promptly followed with a single to left.

With 1-out in the 5th, Juan Lagares made a great diving catch while charging in a shallow Michael Taylor fly ball.  That play was immediately followed by second baseman Dan Uggla‘s grounder to short, and Wilmer Flores‘ throwing error to first.  The Mets got out of the inning with their 1-0 lead in tact.

In the bottom of the 5th, Curtis Granderson legged out a 2-out double, as Dan Uggla failed to secure the throw from left.  Juan Lagares then slashed a single to right field.  Granderson was waved home, but was cut down by a fine throw from Bryce Harper.

Matt Harvey issued his first walk of the evening to Bryce Harper with 2-outs in the 6th.  With Ryan Zimmerman at the plate, Harper stole second base to tentatively put the tying run in scoring position.  Terry Collins, however, correctly challenged the tag at second base to end the threat.

  • Through 6 innings pitched, Harvey was up to 86 pitches, with 56 (65%) going for strikes.  He allowed no runs on just 4 hits, walked one and fanned three.

With 1-out in the 7th, catcher Wilson Ramos ripped Washington’s 5th hit of the game to right.  Ian Desmond then bounced into a 6-4-3 double play to end the inning.

Terry Collins then decided Matt Harvey was done for the night.

  • In 7 innings pitched, Matt Harvey threw 93 pitches, with 61 (66%) going for strikes.  He allowed no runs on 5 hits, walked one, and fanned 3 batters.  He left on the winning side of a 1-0 game.
  • Through 7 innings of work, Max Scherzer finished up at 99 pitches, with 67 going for strikes.  He allowed one earned run on 5 hits, with one walk, and 10 strikeouts.  He exited on the losing side.

Alex Torres entered the game in the 8th in relief of Harvey.  Dan Uggla greeted him with a sharply hit lead-off single.  Tyler Moore pinch-hit for Max Scherzer, and hit a 370 foot fly to left caught by Cuddyer at the wall.  Terry Collins then summoned Jeurys Familia into the game with haste.  Michael Taylor stepped in with 1-out, and flied out deep to right.  Next up, third baseman Yunel Escobar struck out on three pitches.

The Mets rallied again in the 8th.  With 1-out, Lagares and Lucas Duda hit consecutive singles, chasing reliever Matt Thornton from the game.  Michael Cuddyer drew a walk off reliever Blake TreinenDaniel Murphy then lined a fly to left, but Jayson Werth broke in on the ball and fell.  The ball rolled to the wall and the bases cleared to make it a 4-0 game.

Jeurys Familia stayed in to complete a 5-out save.

Scoring Summary:

  • Bottom 4th inninng – With 1-out, Michael Cuddyer homered off Max Scherzer to right/center.
  • Bottom 8th inning – With 1-out, Juan Lagares and Lucas Duda singled.  Michael Cuddyer walked.  Daniel Murphy‘s double cleared the bases to give the Mets a 4-0 lead.


  • With the promotion of second baseman Dilson Herrera, Daniel Murphy moved over to third base and Eric Campbell returned to the bench.  Herrera initiated a 4-6-3 double play in the first inning, and was hit by a pitch on his right elbow in his first at-bat on a high and tight fastball from Scherzer.
  • Michael Cuddyer hit his second home run in his last three games.
  • Juan Lagares was 2 for 4 at the plate, and made his customary highlight play in the 5th inning.
  • Wilmer Flores committed his 7th error of the season (yet another throwing miscue).
  • It was a crisp night, and Matt Harvey was not at his best.  He struggled with command of his fastball, and relied on his breaking pitches, and particularly on his slider more than usual.  He looked typically distressed when told his night was over, but, that’s Matt.  Nevertheless, Harvey earned his 5th straight victory.  Great pitchers find ways to win when they know they aren’t at their best.


  • I was glad to see the Mets strike first against Scherzer.  I was equally pleased Michael Cuddyer, the veteran free agent, was able to put the first dent in Scherzer’s armor.
  • Despite Granderson getting thrown out at the plate in the 5th, I like the aggressive base running, particularly with a 1-0 lead heading into the 6th.
  • Although video replay helped the Mets this evening, its implementation is a disaster.  MLB wants to speed up games, yet, this process brings the game, and pitchers, to a grinding halt.  A 5th umpire; an official eye in the sky; should already have the answer, and be in direct communication with the crew chief.  Good Grief!
  • How about that Jeurys Familia?
  • The Mets are one victory against the Nationals away from tying their 2014 win total against them.


5/2 – Saturday, 7:10pm

Nationals @ METS

Gio Gonzalez vs. Jon Niese