Bartolo Colon got the start Wednesday night against the Nationals with other things on his mind. It showed as he lost his usual pinpoint control and the Mets lost the game.
The Nationals drew first blood in the third. With runners on first and second with two outs, Daniel Murphy hit a sharp grounder over third base. David Wright dove, but it hit off his glove and went for an RBI single.
Yoenis Cespedes tied it up in the fourth with a solo home run, his 13th of the season.
It was a struggle all night for Colon, and the fifth inning was his undoing. With runners on first and second, Murphy hit a grounder up the line at first. Eric Campbell made a sensational diving stop and beat Murphy to the bag for the first out. Colon struck out Ryan Zimmerman for the second out. He got two strikes on Anthony Rendon and it looked like Colon might escape, but Rendon was able to sneak a grounder between short and third. Two runs scored to give the Nats a 3-1 lead and end Colon’s night.
Bartolo Colon ended up going 4.2 innings in which he threw 107 pitches, allowing three runs on five hits. He struck out four and stunningly walked five. It was the most walks Colon has allowed in a game in 11 years. Perhaps he was shaken by the reports that broke earlier in the day about a paternity suit against him.
The Nationals made it 4-1 in the seventh on a sacrifice fly by Murphy. But it was no ordinary sac fly — Juan Lagares made an incredible over-the-shoulder catch in deep center. It likely saved Jayson Werth from scoring from second. But it was only temporary — three straight walks (one by Antonio Bastardo and two by Logan Verrett) forced Werth in to make it 5-1.
Meantime, the Mets bats could not solve Gio Gonzalez. managing just two hits through six innings. But in the seventh, they reached him for three singles to load the bases with one out. That ended his night. Reliever Felipe Rivero got a force out at home on a comebacker off the bat of Kevin Plawecki for the second out. Pinch hitter Michael Conforto grounded out to first to leave the bases loaded.
The Nats scored two more runs in the ninth.
Mets pitchers ended up walking 11 batters in a forgettable 7-1 loss.