Javier Baez had four hits, drove in two runs and scored three times as the New York Mets continued their late-season push with a 13-6 victory over the host Washington Nationals on Sunday afternoon.
Baez, Jonathan Villar, Francisco Lindor and Kevin Pillar each homered for the Mets (69-68), who beat the Nationals (56-80) for the fifth time in nine days to remain within striking distance of the Atlanta Braves and Philadelphia Phillies in the National League East.
Patrick Mazeika broke a 6-6 tie with a sacrifice fly in the eighth inning after Baez, Jeff McNeil and Pillar had led off the inning with consecutive singles. Lindor’s solo homer and a grand slam by Pillar, the third of his career, busted the game open in the ninth inning.
Aaron Loup (5-0), who pitched a scoreless seventh inning, was credited with the win. Yennsy Diaz worked a 1-2-3 bottom of the ninth, capping a five-man, 4 2/3-inning hitless effort by the New York relief corps.
Seeking a second straight win, the Nationals trailed 4-0 after a half-inning and were still down 6-3 before rallying into a tie with a three-run fifth. Juan Soto came through with the last of four straight singles against Mets starter Taijuan Walker, a two-run hit to center field to highlight the uprising.
After throwing a game-tying wild pitch and walking Josh Bell, Walker was pulled in favor of Jeurys Familia, who pitched out of a two-on, one-out situation without further damage.
Walker was charged with six runs on six hits in 4 1/3 innings. He walked three and struck out six.
Seven of the game’s 19 runs came in the first inning, when the Mets used four hits off Nationals starter Josiah Gray, including a two-RBI single by Michael Conforto, to build a 4-0 lead.
Home runs by Lane Thomas, his third of the year, and Bell, his 24th, produced three runs for Washington.
Homers by Villar, his 18th, and Baez, his 28th, padded the New York lead to 6-3 before the Washington comeback.
Pillar finished with two hits and four RBIs, Conforto with two hits and three RBIs, and Pete Alonso two doubles and a single for the Mets.
Villar and McNeil also had two hits for New York, which will complete a four-day, five-game series at Washington on Monday.
Bell joined Soto with two RBIs for the Nationals, while Thomas added a single to his homer to complete a two-hit day.
Andres Machado (1-2), who allowed the run in the eighth inning, was charged with the loss.
–Field Level Media