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Pete Alonso and Harrison Bader homer to back David Peterson as the Mets beat the Nationals 6-3

WASHINGTON (AP) — Pete Alonso hit a 446-foot homer, Harrison Bader launched a two-run shot and the New York Mets beat the Washington Nationals 6-3 on Tuesday night.

David Peterson worked efficiently into the seventh inning in his second start this season for the Mets, who have won four of six since a 7-19 stumble.

Alonso went deep in the ninth inning off Nationals closer Kyle Finnegan, who came in with Washington trailing 5-2. In 81 career games against the Nationals, Alonso has 26 homers, 14 at Nationals Park — the most by any opposing player over the past five years.

“Feels great, but the thing about baseball is you got to come ready to go and ready to go tomorrow," Alonso said. “Today was a really good day personally, really happy I was able to cap off my day with that last swing there but Bader did a great job getting the boys started with that two-run homer. It was just a really great day offensively.”

Left-hander DJ Herz (0-1) made his major league debut for Washington, replacing injured starter Trevor Williams, and was charged with four runs on seven hits in four-plus innings.

“It was amazing,” Herz said. “The adrenaline was pumping, and everybody was very welcoming. It was an awesome first day. Man, I’m tired right now. But it was a great day.”

Bader got the Mets on the board in the fourth when he hit a 1-2 cutter from Herz 390 feet to left-center for his third homer of the season.

“He was a little nervous,” Nationals manager Davey Martinez said. “He was sweating like crazy out there. But you know what, in big moments he kind of settled down and threw strikes and looked really good.”

Herz was pulled after allowing consecutive hits to Alonso and Brandon Nimmo to start the fifth. Those baserunners came in to score on a triple by Starling Marte against reliever Derek Law.

“From the first inning (Francisco) Lindor leading off the game (with a double) and then just continuing to put together some good at-bats against the starter, and then we created traffic," Mets manager Carlos Mendoza said. “Pete adding on late in the game. I thought we had very good approaches and good team effort there.”

Peterson (1-0) was outstanding, allowing two runs on five hits in a season-high 6 2/3 innings. He struck out two, hit two batters and walked two while throwing 81 pitches. The Mets are 6-1 in Peterson’s seven career starts against the Nationals, scoring 45 runs.

He took advantage of Washington's free-swinging approach.

“With (CJ) Abrams swinging at the first pitch and having a six-pitch first inning I think it was kind of laid out as to how the game was going to go,” Peterson said. “I just tried to play into that and get quick outs, get ground balls early and keep the pitch count down and get the hitters back in the dugout.”

Jacob Young had three singles and two RBIs for Washington, which has dropped four of five.

TRAINER’S ROOM

Mets: RHP Edwin Diaz (right shoulder impingement) threw a 21-pitch bullpen session Tuesday, manager Carlos Mendoza said. If all goes well, New York's closer could pitch in the minors on Thursday and is on track to be activated June 13.

Nationals: Williams was placed on the 15-day injured list with a right flexor muscle strain. Manager Dave Martinez said MRI showed no structural damage. Williams has been the Nats' best starter, going 5-0 with a 2.22 ERA in 11 starts. ... RHP Josiah Gray (15-day IL, right elbow/forearm flexor strain) threw 65 pitches Tuesday during a simulated three-inning game. Martinez said if all goes well, Gray will go on a rehab assignment soon.

UP NEXT

The Mets try to complete a three-game sweep, sending RHP Luis Severino (3-2, 3.52 ERA) to the mound Wednesday to face Nationals left-hander Patrick Corbin (1-6, 5.83).

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AP MLB: https://apnews.com/hub/mlb