|Washington (40-39) «||0||0||0||0||1||0||0||3||2||6||8||2|
|N.Y. Mets (32-44)||0||0||0||1||2||0||1||0||0||4||9||0|
"That might've been our biggest win of the year," Nationals manager Davey Johnson said.
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.
But he was pulled after 109 pitches, and then Washington broke loose. A bunch of hitters contributed to the comeback, which pushed the Nationals back over .500.
"Everybody's been down on what they're capable of doing," Johnson said. "This is a good jump-start."
Zimmerman's bases-loaded double came with two outs against Brandon Lyon, the third of four Mets relievers in the inning. Naturally, Zimmerman was glad to see Harvey out of the game.
"I think you'd rather face anyone now except him," he said. "Just because he leaves, it doesn't make the other guy easier to hit."
Sure looked that way, though.
"It's easy to sit here right now when we've lost the game to look back at the seventh or eighth inning and say you should've left him in or should've made this move or that move. It's a very easy thing to say," Mets manager Terry Collins said.
Collins put down any suggestion that Harvey should've kept pitching.
"Yeah, I could've left him in. No doubt about it. I could've let him throw 150. Decided to take him out. I thought he had enough," he said.
Roger Bernadina got things going in the eighth with a leadoff single against David Aardsma. Josh Edgin, Lyon and Scott Rice later pitched in the inning, which included a key two-out double by Denard Span and a walk to Anthony Rendon.
"It's a nine-inning game. We started feeling it," Bernadina said.
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.
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.
The bullpen, meanwhile, was ragged after a 7-4 road trip to four cities.
"It's baseball. Those guys go out and pitch every single day and pitch their butt off," Harvey said. "Today just happened to be one of those days."
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 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.
|The Nationals rally from a late three-run deficit for what Davey Johnson calls the biggest win of the year. (USATSI)|
|Players of the Game|
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|Denard Span, CF||4||1||2||0||0||1||0||.259|
|Anthony Rendon, 2B||3||1||0||0||1||2||1||.327|
|Ryan Zimmerman, 3B||4||0||2||3||0||1||0||.275|
|Adam LaRoche, 1B||4||0||0||0||0||3||2||.257|
|Jayson Werth, RF||4||1||1||0||0||3||1||.266|
|Ian Desmond, SS||4||2||2||2||0||0||1||.276|
|Roger Bernadina, LF||4||1||1||0||0||0||1||.184|
|Kurt Suzuki, C||3||0||0||1||0||1||1||.211|
|Ross Detwiler, P||1||0||0||0||0||1||0||.050|
|Stephen Lombardozzi, PH||1||0||0||0||0||1||0||.236|
|Chad Tracy, PH||1||0||0||0||0||0||1||.135|
|Tyler Moore, PH||1||0||0||0||0||0||0||.157|
|a-struck out for Detwiler in the 6th|
|b-fouled out for Ohlendorf in the 8th|
|c-flied out for Clippard in the 9th|
|2B - Denard Span (14, Edgin), Ryan Zimmerman (16, Lyon), Jayson Werth (6, Parnell), Ian Desmond (20, Parnell)|
|3B - Denard Span (7, Harvey)|
|HR - Ian Desmond (14, Harvey)|
|SF - Kurt Suzuki (3)|
|RBI - Ryan Zimmerman 3 (40), Ian Desmond 2 (45), Kurt Suzuki (15)|
|2-OUT RBI - Ryan Zimmerman 3 (19), Ian Desmond (17)|
|Team LOB - 3|
|E - Ian Desmond (8, Throwing), Ross Ohlendorf (2, Throwing)|
|Tyler Clippard (W,6-1)||1||0||0||0||1||0||0||2.41|
|Drew Storen (S,2)||1||0||0||0||0||0||0||3.86|
|IBB - Lagares by Ross Detwiler|
|Pitches-Strikes - Ross Detwiler 98-56, Ross Ohlendorf 32-22, Tyler Clippard 19-10, Drew Storen 9-6|
|Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Ross Detwiler 6-6, Tyler Clippard 1-2, Drew Storen 2-1|
|Batters Faced - Ross Detwiler 24, Ross Ohlendorf 9, Tyler Clippard 4, Drew Storen 3|
|New York (N.L.) Mets|
|Eric Young Jr., LF||5||1||1||0||0||1||2||.265|
|Daniel Murphy, 2B||5||1||1||0||0||1||1||.272|
|David Wright, 3B||5||1||2||0||0||0||2||.306|
|Marlon Byrd, RF||5||1||1||1||0||1||2||.258|
|Josh Satin, 1B||3||0||3||2||1||0||0||.360|
|John Buck, C||4||0||0||0||0||1||5||.207|
|Juan Lagares, CF||3||0||1||0||1||0||1||.232|
|Omar Quintanilla, SS||3||0||0||0||1||1||5||.234|
|Matt Harvey, P||3||0||0||0||0||0||4||.128|
|Jordany Valdespin, PH||1||0||0||0||0||0||1||.200|
|a-popped out for Rice in the 8th|
|2B - David Wright (16, Detwiler), Marlon Byrd (12, Detwiler), Josh Satin 2 (3, Detwiler), Juan Lagares (8, Ohlendorf)|
|RBI - Marlon Byrd (39), Josh Satin 2 (4)|
|2-OUT RBI - Marlon Byrd (11), Josh Satin 2 (3)|
|Team LOB - 9|
|New York (N.L.) Mets|
|David Aardsma (H,1)||0.2||1||1||1||0||1||0||2.08|
|Brandon Lyon (BS,3)||0||1||1||1||1||0||0||3.45|
|Bobby Parnell (L,5-4)||1||2||2||2||0||0||0||2.83|
|Pitches-Strikes - Matt Harvey 109-70, David Aardsma 12-7, Josh Edgin 3-2, Brandon Lyon 8-3, Scott Rice 3-3, Bobby Parnell 21-15|
|Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Matt Harvey 2-8|
|Batters Faced - Matt Harvey 24, David Aardsma 3, Josh Edgin 1, Brandon Lyon 2, Scott Rice 1, Bobby Parnell 5|
|Attendance - 28363|
|Game Time - 3:19|
|Temperature - 81|
|Umpires - Home - Doug Eddings, First Base - Dana DeMuth, Second Base - Angel Hernandez, Third Base - Paul Nauert|