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National League Preview from The Sports Network



Saturday, May 17th (All times Eastern)

New York Mets (19-22) at Washington Nationals (22-19), 4:05 p.m.

Probable Starting Pitchers: New York - Bartolo Colon (2-5, 5.84) Washington - Gio Gonzalez (3-3, 3.97)

(SportsNetwork.com) - The last time Bartolo Colon beat the Washington Nationals the team was located in Montreal. The right-hander gets the starting assignment Saturday for the New York Mets in the middle test of a three-game set at Nationals Park.

Colon, one week shy of his 41st birthday, suffered a loss to the Nationals on April 2 this year at Citi Field when he gave up nine hits and three earned runs over six innings. His last victory versus the Nationals franchise came June 22, 2002 when he pitched for the Cleveland Indians. Colon threw eight innings that day to win at Montreal's Olympic Stadium. He's 1-2 with a 2.35 ERA in three career games versus the Nationals/Expos.

This will be his Nationals Park debut and will be the 42nd major league stadium in which he's appeared in a game.

Colon, who enters today's contest with 1,988 career strikeouts, is 0-2 over his last three starts. That includes a no-decision against the Yankees on Monday when he was shelled for 11 hits and seven runs -- six earned -- over 5 2/3 innings.

Gio Gonzalez was matched up against Colon in that April 2 contest, and the two are the mound opponents today. The lefty is 6-1 with a 2.45 ERA in nine lifetime starts versus the Mets. He's won his last six decisions against them, covering seven starts, with the only defeat coming July 19, 2012.

Gonzalez has struggled of late, going 0-2 over his previous four starts. His last win came April 18 against St. Louis. On Sunday, Gonzalez was pounded for nine hits and seven runs in 4 1/3 innings of a 9-1 loss at Oakland.

The Nationals have now beaten the Mets nine straight times after taking the opener on Friday, as Tyler Moore drove in two runs and Washington's bullpen tossed four scoreless innings in a 5-2 final.

Tanner Roark (3-1) allowed two runs on four hits over five innings for Washington. Ross Detwiler, Drew Storen and Tyler Clippard all pitched a scoreless inning to hold the lead for Rafael Soriano, who survived a scare in the ninth to post his ninth save of the season.

After retiring the first two batters he faced, Soriano walked the next two and Daniel Murphy put a drive into the first pitch he saw only to have a jumping Jayson Werth catch it at the wall in right to end the game.

Moore, Werth and Scott Hairston all finished with two hits for the Nationals, while Werth, Hairston and Wilson Ramos drove in a run each in the triumph.

Jonathon Niese's (2-3) shortest outing of the season ended after surrendering five runs -- three earned -- on eight hits in four innings of work.

05/17 10:27:34 ET

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