Washington drops series opener to Mets, 8-5

nationals_logoWashington knocked out Mets starter Jon Niese with a five-run third, and had ace Max Scherzer on the mound. The Nats seemed poised to gain a game on first-place New York, but Scherzer, continuing his second-half struggles, couldn’t hold the lead, and the Mets rallied for an 8-5 win at Nationals Park on Monday.

Scherzer gave up five runs on seven hits in six innings of work, striking out six without issuing a walk.

Niese was charged for five runs on seven hits in three and a third innings, the big blow being a grand slam by Wilson Ramos, his 13th homer of the season.

The New York pen was lights out from there, allowing two hits and a walk in five and two-thirds scoreless innings.

A David Wright RBI single keyed a three-run seventh for New York that broke a 5-5 tie.

Blake Treinen (2-3, 3.54 ERA) took the loss for the Nats (71-66), who had their five-game winning streak snapped, and fell to five games back of the Mets (76-61) in the National League East.