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New York Mets (40-34) at Washington Nationals (44-32)
Tuesday, June 28 - 7:05 PM EST
Nationals Park, Washington, District of Columbia
Matt Harvey's place in the starting rotation was placed in jeopardy after a pair of disastrous starts versus the Washington Nationals last month. While the ensuing results haven't been promising, Harvey has pitched significantly better in his last five outings for the New York Mets heading into the second contest of the three-game set versus the host Nationals on Tuesday.
Washington sent an all-too-familiar message to the 27-year-old right-hander by erupting for 17 hits and stealing a season-high six bases in an 11-4 rout on Monday. Daniel Murphy continued to torment his former team by driving in a pair of runs in the series opener and is blistering 12-for-28 with two homers and eight RBIs in seven encounters this season. While the first-place Nationals have won two in a row following a season-high seven-game losing streak, the Mets have dropped three of five to fall four games out in the NL East. Wilmer Flores had a two-run single in the third inning to give New York a 4-0 lead and is 6-for-14 with four RBIs in his last four games after a 3-for-29 stretch in his previous 10.
TV: 7:05 p.m. ET, MLB Network, SNY (New York), MASN (Washington)
PITCHING MATCHUP: Mets RH Matt Harvey (4-9, 4.64 ERA) vs. Nationals RH Lucas Giolito (NA)
Harvey was blitzed for 14 runs on 16 hits - including four homers - in a pair of losses to Washington last month. The right-hander has kept the ball in the park in each of his last five outings and surrendered just eight runs in that span (32 innings), but only has a 1-2 mark to show for it. Harvey has flustered Bryce Harper (1-for-24) in his career, although Anthony Rendon (6-for-17) and Ben Revere (5-for-15) have gotten their licks in against the struggling stud.
An injured Stephen Strasburg's loss is Giolito's gain as the latter is expected to be recalled from Double-A Harrisburg to make his major-league debut. The 21-year-old Giolito, who was the 16th overall pick of the 2012 draft, posted a 5-3 mark with a 3.17 ERA in 14 starts with the Senators. "He's ready for the task," Washington manager Dusty Baker told reporters of Giolito, who has struck out 72 batters in 71 innings this season.
1. New York general manager Sandy Alderson is scheduled to meet with manager Terry Collins and Steven Matz on Tuesday to discuss the best course of action as the right-hander deals with a bone spur in his elbow.
2. Nationals OF Jayson Werth is 8-for-24 with seven runs scored versus the Mets this season.
3. New York OF Juan Lagares (thumb) is expected to begin a rehab assignment with Double-A Binghamton on Tuesday.
PREDICTION: Mets 4, Nationals 3