Harper hits hard home run, propels Nationals over Mets 8-3

Baker won on his 68th birthday.

Not far behind his excellence is Stephen Strasburg. With a win Sunday, Washington moves 12 1/2 games ahead of NY, matching the largest gap this season.

With both teams trending in opposite directions, this set is made all the more interesting since it's possible the Mets could get the division lead down to 4 1/2 games if they have the best possible weekend. Washington hit three homers for the second straight matchup and turned four double plays - one night after spinning three behind ace Max Scherzer. Then to Enny Romero. "That's a lot of outs for your bullpen". Mets: Cespedes, who returned from a strained hamstring June 10, started his third straight game ahead of a scheduled rest Sunday. That margin is back over double digits, the Mets are gasping for air after another cycle of injuries, and the Nationals are poised for a four-game road sweep Sunday. "Have to do your best not to lose on his day", Gonzalez said.

Coming off a four-hit shutout against Philadelphia, Martinez (6-5) gave up one run and four hits.

He walked two and hit two batters with changeups, and his 118 pitches were his most since May 11 a year ago. Strasburg and Conforto battled to a full count before Strasburg unleashed a sharp curveball out of the strike zone that Conforto flailed at for strike three. Seth Lugo took the loss, falling to 1-1 this season after giving up four runs, three earned, on seven hits while striking out five over 6.2 innings of work.

"I'm a fly-ball pitcher, guys", he said. "So holding them to singles, I'm okay with it".

New York Giants tight end Evan Engram, the team's first-round draft pick, threw out the ceremonial first pitch. His cameo was a short one, terminated after he allowed a leadoff home run to Cespedes and a single to Flores while getting just one out.

Cincinnati's Tim Adelman allowed a homer to Joc Pederson and gave up two runs and five hits.

The Nationals won 7-4 on Saturday and have not trailed in the first three games of the series, during which they've outscored the Mets 22-9. Trea Turner launched that second pitch, a 91-mph two-seam fastball right down the middle, over the wall in left field. But his Mets counterpart deGrom smacked his first career homer to lead off the third. But he ran well all day, legging out two infield singles, twice going first to third and even galloping a long way for a running catch in deep left field. If Ross can keep this one somewhat under control, I think the Nationals with the plus money has to be the play here. "It's tough to kind of get in a rhythm in his role and everything like that".

Indians 12, Dodgers 5 • Pinch-hitter Lonnie Chisenhall connected for a three-run homer and had five RBIs as host Cleveland Indians salvaged the finale of a three-game series by beating Los Angeles.

MINNEAPOLIS - Chris Gimenez homered twice for the first time in his big league career, Eduardo Escobar sparked a five-run first inning for Minnesota with a two-run shot, and Jose Berrios and the Twins beat Seattle. Turner scored from first on Rendon's double in the ninth. He was willing to pitch around him knowing that a lefty was on deck.

In Arlington, Texas, Tyson Ross allowed just a pair of runs in his first start in 14 months and Carlos Gomez homered for the Rangers.

"Today was a great day", Lobaton said.

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