Mets beat Nationals 3-1; closer Mejia’s elbow tightens
WASHINGTON (AP) — If the New York Mets were pleased about 41-year-old Bartolo Colon’s brilliance in Game 1 — and why wouldn’t they be? — whatever enthusiasm that generated was offset by closer Jenrry Mejia’s tight pitching elbow.
Colon (1-0), the oldest opening-day starter in the majors in nearly a decade, helped the Mets beat the Washington Nationals 3-1 Monday.
The save, though, was recorded by Buddy Carlyle because Mejia had problems warming up for the ninth inning.
“His elbow was stiff. Couldn’t get it loose,” manager Terry Collins said. “And with what we’ve seen right now — and he’s had elbow issues in the past — we had to shut him down.”
The team said Mejia will fly to New York on Tuesday to be examined by Mets medical director Dr. David Altchek.
Mejia went 6-6 with 28 saves last season, his first as a closer.
A year ago on opening day, Mets closer Bobby Parnell blew a save in a 9-7 loss to Washington and was out for the rest of the season after Tommy John surgery.
For Carlyle, who got the last two outs after former Nationals reliever Jerry Blevins got Bryce Harper to fly out to deep right field, it was his first major league save — at age 37.
“It just shows you never know what’s going to happen,” said Carlyle, a somewhat surprising addition to the opening-day roster at the end of spring training.
Colon (1-0) pitched six clean innings for the Mets, the only damage being Harper’s homer that made it 1-0 in the fourth.
Lucas Duda’s two-run single with two outs in the sixth off a 98 mph fastball from Scherzer put New York ahead with its first hit of the season, right after shortstop Ian Desmond made the first of his two errors.
“We’re lucky we caught a break right there,” Duda said.
Before the game, Duda and general manager Sandy Alderson said they were unable to come to an agreement on a long-term contract.
Scherzer (0-1) was in total control until the sixth, retiring 17 batters in a row between a pair of walks to Curtis Granderson. But that’s when David Wright hit a popup toward the grass beyond the infield dirt between first and second.
Dan Uggla, starting at second base because three everyday Nationals are on the disabled list, tried to call off Desmond, who moved over to make the play. The ball hit the edge of Desmond’s glove and dropped.
“That was pretty embarrassing,” said Desmond, whose throwing error in the seventh led to another unearned run. “I felt like one of those Little Leaguers.”
BLEVINS IS BACK
Blevins, acquired by the Mets from the Nationals for OF Matt den Dekker late in spring training, heard a loud cheer from the sellout crowd of 42,295. “I didn’t expect it,” Blevins said. “I was only here a year, but they treated me really well. I was a little bit shocked to get a good applause, and I thank them for it.”
Mets: 2B Daniel Murphy started despite dealing with an injured right hamstring lately — he made a throwing error on a grounder in the first — and Collins said Murphy could get a day off at Atlanta next series. ... New York rescinded the outright assignment of OF Cesar Puello (back injury) to Triple-A Las Vegas and put him on the 15-day DL.
Nationals: LF Jayson Werth, 3B Anthony Rendon and CF Denard Span are on the DL.
Mets: RHP Jacob deGrom, the 2014 NL Rookie of the Year, takes the mound Wednesday. He made one start against Washington last season, a no-decision in August. Desmond went 2 for 3 with a homer.
Nationals: RHP Jordan Zimmermann aims to pick up where he left off six months ago, when he threw a no-hitter in the regular-season finale and then went 8 2-3 innings in Game 2 of the NLDS against San Francisco.
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