Nats turn to Gonzalez in opener with Mets
(Sports Network) - Southpaw Gio Gonzalez faces the New York Mets for the eighth time in his career on Monday night when the Washington Nationals visit Citi Field to open a four-game series.
The 27-year-old, who'll turn 28 in 10 days, is 4-1 in his initial seven starts against the Mets while posting a stingy 3.15 earned run average and holding New York batters to a .204 collective average.
He's won two straight decisions overall since his last loss, which came via 2-1 verdict on Aug. 18 in Atlanta.
A no-decision in an 11-10 win at Kansas City came next on Aug. 23, and has since been followed by defeats of Miami and Philadelphia in which Gonzalez has allowed just one earned run on eight hits in 12 2/3 innings with 14 strikeouts.
Gonzalez is 4-3 in 14 road starts this season.
For the Mets, journeyman righty Carlos Torres makes his sixth start of the season in his 29th appearance.
A veteran of six starts in 44 major league appearances prior to 2013, Torres has been pressed into full-time starting duty since the Mets lost Matt Harvey for the season with an elbow injury.
He went 6 2/3 innings and allowed a single run while defeating Philadelphia, 11-3, on Aug. 29, then went seven innings and allowed three runs in a 3-1 defeat at Atlanta on Sept. 3.
In two career meetings with Washington, he's 0-1 with a 14.40 ERA.
On Sunday in Miami, Wilson Ramos went 3-for-5 with a solo homer, two RBI and two runs scored as the Nationals beat the Marlins, 6-4, in the rubber match of a three-game series.
Adeiny Hechavarria and Greg Dobbs had an RBI apiece for the Marlins, who went 1-for-7 with runners in scoring position and stranded six. Jacob Turner (3-6) got the start for Miami and gave up five runs on nine hits over four-plus innings.
In Cleveland, Eric Young's ninth inning double broke a tie game and the Mets avoided a three-game sweep at the hands of the Indians by notching a 2-1 victory.
New York failed to score with the bases loaded in the eighth, but were able to break the 1-1 deadlock in the ninth off Chris Perez (5-3).
Matt den Dekker singled to start the frame, moved to second on Anthony Recker's sac bunt, then came in to score on Young's extra-base hit into right. Jason Giambi greeted LaTroy Hawkins in the last half of the ninth with a single. Mike Aviles came on to pinch run, but was thrown out by Recker trying to steal second base.
Aviles was ejected and Hawkins got Drew Stubbs to strike out to secure his eighth save. Frank Francisco (1-0) made his first appearance of the season, inducing an inning-ending double play in the eighth when the Indians had the bases loaded.
Daisuke Matsuzaka put forth his best outing in a Mets uniform, allowing one run on three hits in 5 2/3 innings. He struck out six while walking three against the team that cut him loose in August.
The Nationals won eight of the first 15 games with the Mets in 2013, though New York took two of three in a series from Aug. 30 to Sept. 1.
09/09 11:12:54 ET