|10:05 AM PT11:05 AM MT12:05 PM CT1:05 PM ET13:05 ET17:05 GMT1:05 10:05 AM MST12:05 PM EST12:35 PM VEN21:05 UAE12:05 PM CT, May 16, 2019
Nationals Park, Washington, District of Columbia Attendance: 28,807
Nats' Sanchez tries to avoid 0-7 start vs. Mets
New York Mets at Washington Nationals
- The Mets and Nationals have split six games so far this season, with each team winning twice at the other's ballpark. New York has gone 8-4 in Washington since last season, and are 5-1 in those games when scoring at least five runs.
- The Mets have gone 3-11 in their last 14 road games after opening the season 7-1 away from home. New York averaged 6.1 runs over its first eight road games but has scored only 3.4 runs per game in its last 14.
- Michael Conforto has gone 5-for-6 over his last two games with two home runs and two walks. Conforto is one of five NL players with 15+ extra-base hits and 25+ walks, along with Christian Yelich (22 XBH, 28 BB), Rhys Hoskins (21 XBH, 28 BB), Kris Bryant (20 XBH, 28 BB) and Bryce Harper (17 XBH, 31 BB).
- The Nationals return home after a 3-7 road trip that saw them bat .196 and average 3.0 runs. For the season, Washington is hitting .236 with an average of 4.4 runs per game.
- Juan Soto picked up a hit in his first game back from the IL, a Washington win, while going hitless in his second game back, a Washington loss. For the season, Soto is hitting .283 in wins compared to .215 in losses.
- Noah Syndergaard has faced the Nationals twice this season, going 0-1 with a 4.50 ERA, striking out 13 and walking two in 12.0 innings. Jeremy Hellickson has not faced the Mets yet this season but has a 2.70 ERA in three starts versus NL East teams (all versus Phi).
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Washington Nationals right-hander Anibal Sanchez hopes to sidestep negative history when he starts the series finale at home Thursday afternoon against the New York Mets.
Sanchez, who played last year for the Atlanta Braves, will try to avoid becoming just the second pitcher in Nationals history to start the season 0-7. Jason Marquis began the 2010 season 0-7 for Washington.
Sanchez is 0-6 with a 5.27 ERA this year for Washington but 5-5 with a 4.13 ERA in 14 career starts against the Mets. Sanchez has not lost to New York since 2011.
The Mets will start right-hander Zack Wheeler (3-2, 4.35), who is 4-9 with a 5.01 ERA in 15 career starts against the Nationals. He was 0-1, 10.24 in two starts last year against Washington and he once lost four games to them in a season -- in 2014.
But Wheeler, in his last start, tied a season-high with 11 strikeouts as he went seven innings on May 10 to beat the Miami Marlins at home 11-2.
"I've just been attacking the zone hard and trying to get strike one," Wheeler told mlb.com. "I try to get a quick out after that, whether it's a strikeout or ground ball or whatever it may be. Tight in the zone, strike one and just go from there."
Nationals hitters are 52-for-158 (.329) against Wheeler. Third baseman Anthony Rendon is 10-for-30 (.333) against him, and the Houston native was 3-for-4 Wednesday.
Mets hitters are 23-for-112 (.205) with a homer off Sanchez. The only New York player with a homer off him is Michael Conforto, who is one-for-seven against the veteran.
The back end of the Nationals rotation has been a problem with Jeremy Hellickson (6.00 ERA) and Sanchez, who has pitched just 41 innings in eight starts this year.
Former starter Erick Fedde has pitched well out of the bullpen this season and could be an option if the Nationals want a new member of the rotation. He has not allowed a run in eight innings over four relief appearances.
"He is probably capable right now of going 85 to 90 pitches," Nationals general manager Mike Rizzo said Wednesday on 106.7 The Fan, the team's flagship radio station. "It would not take long for Fedde to be stretched out."
In the second game of the series Wednesday, lefty Patrick Corbin of the Nationals fanned 11 and gave up just one run in eight innings as Washington won 5-1 to even the series.
The Nationals have not won a series since April 16-18 against the Giants.
"It is a big series for us," outfielder Adam Eaton said after the win. "Hopefully it is contagious."
"It was great for tonight (but) we have to do it consistently," first baseman Howie Kendrick said.
Washington shortstop Trea Turner (0-for-4, two strikeouts) continued a minor league rehab assignment Wednesday with Class-A Potomac of the Carolina League. General manager Mike Rizzo said he will be evaluated after playing there Thursday.
Washington first baseman Ryan Zimmerman, on the IL since April 28 with plantar fasciitis in his right foot, took groundballs during batting practice Wednesday.
Lefty pitcher Steven Matz of the Mets threw on the side Wednesday, the day he was eligible to come off the injured list. He is 3-2, 3.86 in seven starts this year.
--Field Level Media
Updated May 16, 2019