The New York Mets were defeated 6-2 by the Washington Nationals on a chilly Friday evening in Flushing, dropping their record to 3-4.

Going into Citi Field’s 3rd opening day, and the Mets’ 50th overall, they looked to give the sellout crowd a win with their top starter on the hill.  However, R.A. Dickey wasn’t quite able to consistantly command his knuckleball, giving up 3 runs on 6 hits (including a 2-RBI single to the opposing pitcher, Jordan Zimmermann).  He also walked 5 and was constantly behind in the count.

Zimmermann was effective enough to limit the Mets to 2 runs in his 5.1 innings.  From there, the Nationals’ bullpen slammed the door, allowing just one more hit and no more runs.

It was a 3-2 game heading into the 8th until the Mets bullpen allowed the Nats some breathing room – Tim Brdak and Bobby Parnell combined to allow the final 3 runs to effectively put the game away.

3 up:

– The Mets’ defense: There were several outstanding defensive plays, despite the overall sluggish game by the hosts – in the 5th inning, with the bases loaded and the score at 3-1, Jose Reyes made a spectacular diving stop on a ground ball up the middle to turn a double play and keep the game within reach.  Then in the 9th, Angel Pagan made a nice running catch on a deep fly ball and then doubled Adam LaRoche off first. 

-D.J. Carrasco: With the game at 3-2, he came on in the 6th and pitched 2 scoreless innings.

-Pregame festivities: Always nice to see Ralph Kiner throw out the first pitch.

3 Down:

– Clutch hitting: The Mets were 0-10 with runners in scoring position today, including multiple opportunities late in the game.

-Scott Hairston: It’s game 7 and I’ve already seen enough of this guy.  The announcers mentioned before his pinch hit appearance in the 6th that he always swings for the fences.  Sure enough, with a man on 3rd with 2 outs, he struck out, taking Paul Bunyan-type hacks on each swing.  Since it was a 3-2 game at that point, all that’s needed is a single and the game is tied.  Then, in the 9th, with the score 6-2 (and the Mets needing baserunners), he promptly popped up on another Home Run Derby swing.  Since the Mets’ slogan is all about playing the right way, let’s hope this doesn’t last.

-Throwing strikes: Mets pitchers combined to walk 9 Nationals today.  Guys, you’re pitching in Citi Field – it’s okay to throw strikes and allow some contact.

On Deck: The Mets look to even up the series tomorrow at 7:10 PM.

WAS Gorzelanny vs. NYM Capuano