NY Mets 7, Washington 6
When: 7:10 PM ET, Friday, September 22, 2017
Where: Citi Field, New York City, New York
Mike Winters, 1B -
Marty Foster, 2B -
Chris Segal, 3B -
NEW YORK -- Jeurys Familia recorded the final out of the New York Mets' narrow comeback win over the Washington Nationals as the crowd of 28,095 roared and the triumphant sounds of Ace Frehley's "New York Groove" filled the air.
For a split second Friday night, it felt for the Mets and their fans the way it did back then -- way back in 2015.
Familia earned his first save in more than four months to cap a night filled with what-could-have-beens for the Mets, who stormed back from a five-run deficit to edge the Nationals 7-6 in a game as entertaining as it was devoid of meaning in the standings at Citi Field.
"That was cool to see," said Mets catcher Travis d'Arnaud, who hit two homers, including a game-tying three-run shot to cap a three-run fifth. "It was nice to have a lot of the fans stay there and we were able to see Jeurys come in and do his thing. It was a real fun atmosphere."
Such atmospheres have been in short supply this season at Citi Field, where the Mets (66-87) have played to increasingly smaller crowds as a once-promising season turned sour due to injuries and underperformance.
Only two members of the 25-man Opening Day roster have remained active all season for New York, which jump-started its run to the World Series in 2015 by sweeping the Nationals in a series immediately after the July 31 trade deadline. Washington returned to the top of the National League East last year, when the Mets advanced to the NL wild-card game.
"We've all been there and we've seen it done, so we know it exists and we know how good this team could have been," said Mets manager Terry Collins, who is unsigned beyond this season and may have begun his final homestand as manager Friday night. "Reality is you've got to get through it, grind it out and we've tried to do that."
Reminders of a lost season were visible Friday night, when the locker occupied by left fielder Yoenis Cespedes -- who was limited to 81 games by a variety of leg injuries -- was empty except for two packed boxes and a uniform.
The Mets will get a couple more reminders Saturday, when right-handers Noah Syndergaard and Matt Harvey, who were expected to form 40 percent of a vaunted young rotation, will "piggyback" each other in the middle game of the three-game series. Syndergaard, who hasn't pitched for New York since suffering a torn right lat April 30, will pitch the first inning before giving way to Harvey, who missed two months with a shoulder injury and is 1-3 with a 13.19 ERA in four starts since his return.
Another promising Mets right-hander, Robert Gsellman, put the Mets in a 6-1 hole by allowing three runs apiece in the third and fifth innings Friday night. But New York chased Nationals starter Edwin Jackson in the bottom of the fifth, when Nori Aoki and Asdrubal Cabrera each delivered RBI singles before d'Arnaud hit his second homer.
The Mets produced the winning run in the sixth, when Juan Lagares doubled off Joe Blanton (2-4) with one out, went to third on a wild pitch and scored on Aoki's ground-rule double.
Winning pitcher Chasen Bradford (2-0), Paul Sewald and Jerry Blevins combined on three innings of one-hit ball before the Nationals threatened in the ninth against A.J. Ramos, who has been serving as closer while Familia completes his comeback from May surgery to repair a blood clot in his right shoulder.
Ramos allowed a walk and a hit before being pulled with one out and runners at the corners for left-hander Josh Smoker, who retired left-handed-hitting Adam Lind on a fly out to shallow left. Familia, who had 94 saves the previous two years, then entered and whiffed rookie Victor Robles for his first save since May 5.
"Obviously, it just felt really good to be able to help the team out," Familia said through an interpreter.
Aoki had three hits while Cabrera reached base in all four plate appearances (two singles and two walks).
Lind hit a three-run homer in the third for the NL East-champion Nationals (92-61), who have lost six of 10. Howie Kendrick had two hits, including an RBI double in the fifth. Robles, one of four rookies in Friday's starting lineup, laced a two-run triple two batters later.
"You can't rescue them all the time," Nationals manager Dusty Baker said when asked why he let Robles hit against Familia. "Let's see what you can do."
Gsellman allowed the six runs (five earned) on four hits and three walks while striking out four over five innings. Jackson gave up six runs on eight hits and two walks while striking out four over 4 2/3 innings.
NOTES: The two-homer game was the second for Mets C Travis d'Arnaud, who also went deep twice against the Nationals on April 28. ... Mets SS Amed Rosario, who missed the previous three games with gastroenteritis, went 1-for-4. ... Nationals RF Bryce Harper (left knee bruise) took batting practice, ran the bases and shagged fly balls Friday afternoon. ... Nationals RHP Shawn Kelley exited with a finger injury with one out in the eighth inning.
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