Published: Wed, July 13, 2016
Sport | By Billy Aguilar

The Nationals, and Murphy, are trolling the hell out of the Mets

NL batting leader Daniel Murphy has homered six times against the Mets this season - a year ago while playing for the Mets, he had a total of five home runs at the break.

"You don't mention the lead too much", he said. Scherzer said when asked about Murphy. He just understands what he is doing at the plate. "He's hitting like.350. He's a really good hitter". Gonzalez won at NY with six strong innings on May 18 but was lit up for seven runs on 10 hits in five frames against the Mets on May 23. He is hitting.349 overall - and he's batting.438 (21 of 48) with 19 RBI against the Mets after becoming a free agent in the offseason and signing with Washington.

Murphy refused to discuss his accomplishments against the team that he led to the NL pennant.

Washington Nationals starting pitcher Gio Gonzalez delivers during the first inning of a baseball game against the New York Mets, Sunday, July 10, 2016, in New York.

"All I can say is there's a lot of baseball left", Cespedes said through a translator. "That's the way I look at it".

The NL East leaders opened a five-game lead on the Mets.

Nationals manager Dusty Baker did not understand the booing. "And the players I had - Jeff Kent, Moises Alou, Sammy Sosa, Barry Bonds". "When it is hot (the ball) travels like heck", Baker said.

Against the Mets so far this season, Murphy is batting.423.

"We're still in the race", Manager Terry Collins told reporters after the game. "Only problem is everything for me started to come together and now I have four days off", Reyes said. "That's human nature and it's part of the game". "So we're upbeat, we're going to take the rest and get ready for the second half". We're giving him balls to hit. With a chance to hit for the cycle in the eighth, Murphy worked an eight-pitch walk.

Said Collins: "I really believe the more Jose is in the lineup, the more he gets accustomed to what's going on at this level, at this speed, after having some time off, I think he's going to be a big factor". His final line was 5.2 innings, four hits, two runs, three strikeouts and four walks.

The Nationals tied a franchise record with their 54th win before the All-Star break, matching the 1994 Montreal Expos. Verrett allowed five runs, four hits and five walks (one intentional) while striking out three. In the first inning, they threatened against Max Scherzer and scored one run on a sacrifice fly. They now have a six game lead in the N.L. East as they head into the All-Star break. But with runners on the corners and one out after that run had already scored, Scherzer struck out Asdrubal Cabrera and Brandon Nimmo to end the inning. Giolito threw four scoreless innings then filled in for Ross on Thursday in NY against the Mets, but was hit hard in his second outing as he couldn't get out of the fourth and was sent to Triple-A Syracuse on Friday. The pitcher said he was still strong and wanted to finish the inning. He got checked and stayed in.

Scherzer explained after the game, the brown eye, his left one, is his pitching eye. Werth got that rally started with a leadoff walk. Most of all, they might still be looking to replace Jonathan Papelbon as the closer, but he's been dominant since coming off the Disabled List. NY added All-Star right-hander Noah Syndergaard and slugger Yoenis Cespedes to its injury list on Friday and did not have enough without Cespedes in the lineup to make a dent in Nationals star Max Scherzer during Saturday's 6-1 loss.

The All-Star game will be played in San Diego, where Strasburg grew up. Or have they actually overperformed in light of their rash of injuries? Matz has lost his last three decisions.

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