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Night Cap: Hefner Struggles Against Nationals, Mets Can't Come Back

It's tough to expect the Mets to win a game in which Jeremy Hefner starts opposite Gio Gonzalez, but it sure would have been nice if the team's lineup had given the pitching staff any support this afternoon.

Hefner gave up five runs in five innings, the first two of which scored on a home run by Danny Espinosa in the second inning. Washington plated two more in the third inning when Hefner allowed a single to Jayson Werth, a triple to Bryce Harper, and a single to Ryan Zimmerman. From here, it seems like Zimmerman gets overlooked an awful lot, but he is, when healthy, one of the premier third basemen in the game.

Harper hit a solo home run in the fifth, which was surprisingly the last time the Nationals would score in the game. But the Mets never came close to tying the game despite an incredibly rare three-inning scoreless stretch from the bullpen — Manny Acosta, Josh Edgin, and Bobby Parnell.

In the sixth inning, Ike Davis scored on a ground out by Jason Bay, but the Mets only scored one more run on a single by Kelly Shoppach in the eighth inning. So long as he produces at the plate and is willing to stick around with the Mets in 2013 for a reasonable salary, Shoppach can text whoever the hell he damn pleases.

On the bright side, the Mets return home tomorrow to begin a four-game series against the Rockies, one of the worst teams in the National League this year. R.A. Dickey and Alex White are listed as the probable starters.

SB Nation Coverage

* Traditional Recap
* Boxscore
* Amazin' Avenue Gamethread
* Federal Baseball Gamethread

Win Probability Added

Big winners: Ronny Cedeno, +3.9% WPA
Big losers: Jeremy Hefner, -26.5% WPA
Teh aw3s0mest play: Ronny Cedeno's leadoff triple in the fourth, +5.8% WPA
Teh sux0rest play: Danny Espinosa's two-run home run in the second, -19.9% WPA
Total pitcher WPA: -24.8% WPA
Total batter WPA: -25.2% WPA
GWRBI!: Bryce Harper