NEW YORK (AP) — Joe Ross rebounded from the worst outing of his career by pitching six solid innings and helping himself with an RBI single as the Washington Nationals beat the New York Mets 7-1 on Saturday.
Ross allowed five hits and one walk while striking out four. He gave up 10 runs in 4 1/3 innings against St. Louis on Monday.
The 27-year-old right-hander, who opted out last season due to coronavirus concerns, said it was easier to recover from the poor performance because of how he fared in his first two starts, when he tossed 11 scoreless innings against the Cardinals and Dodgers.
“I think starting off well probably made it a little bit easier,” Ross said. “Also, it’s one game. One not great game, can kind of shake that off. If it’s two or three in a row, it might be different.”
Michael Conforto homered for the Mets in the fourth. New York threatened after Conforto’s shot off the right-field foul pole, but after giving up infield singles to J.D. Davis and Jeff McNeil, Ross came back from a 3-1 count to get James McCann to line out.
The scuffling Mets got just one more runner into scoring position against Ross (2-1) and a trio of relievers.
“Our biggest thing has been hitting with runners in scoring position,” manager Luis Rojas said of the Mets, who are batting .190 in such situations. “It just hasn’t happened enough.”
Yadiel Hernandez, a 33-year-old rookie who entered with six hits in 36 career at-bats, had two hits and two RBIs for the Nationals. Six starters had an RBI and seven players got a hit for Washington, which finished with 10 singles and no extra-base hits but drew five walks and a hit by pitch.
“Any time you’ve got people on base, you’re putting pressure on the other side,” second baseman Josh Harrison said.