Washington, DC (SportsNetwork.com) - Bryce Harper belted a two-run homer in the bottom of the 13th inning to lift the Washington Nationals to a 5-3 win over the New York Mets on Thursday.
Harper homered to left field on a 1-0 fastball after Carlos Torres (5-5) issued a leadoff walk to Ian Desmond.
"I was just trying to barrel something," Harper said. "It got to the point where I was just trying to get something out over (the plate) and try to punish it and I got a pitch I could hit."
Craig Stammen (2-4) tossed three scoreless innings to pick up the win. He got Eric Campbell on a comebacker to the mound for the final out in the 13th after giving up a double to David Wright and intentionally walking Lucas Duda.
The NL East-leading Nationals took two of three from the Mets and head to Atlanta 4 1/2 games up on the second-place Braves, who have lost eight in a row.
Desmond drove in the first three Nationals runs off New York starter Jacob deGrom. The rookie righty, who had a 1.04 ERA while winning each of his previous five starts, was taken off the hook for the loss when the Mets rallied in the seventh.
"I kind of struggled in my command," said deGrom. "I was throwing strikes but I wasn't really locating as well as I wanted to. It was a mental battle today. I kept us in the ballgame."
Washington starter Jordan Zimmermann ended a New York threat in the sixth by striking out Juan Lagares with men on the corners, but departed after giving up two singles in the seventh.
Drew Storen inherited a 3-1 lead that quickly dissolved. He threw a wild pitch before serving up an Eric Young Jr. sacrifice fly. Curtis Granderson then tied the game with a two-out rocket up the middle for an RBI single.
The Nationals had opportunities to move ahead and end the game earlier, but stranded two in both the eighth and ninth innings. They also left two men on base in the 12th.
Adam LaRoche doubled twice and was knocked in two times by Desmond, who ended deGrom's homerless streak in the second.
After LaRoche opened the inning by lacing a double down the right-field line, Desmond drove a pitch over the wall in left-center field for a two-run shot.
DeGrom had gone a franchise rookie record 67 1/3 innings without allowing a home run.
New York got on the board in the third, with deGrom scoring on Daniel Murphy's two-out double after Denard Span was unable to make a diving catch in the left-center field gap.
The tandem of LaRoche and Desmond delivered again in the fourth. Desmond followed a LaRoche ground-rule double with a single over the glove of shortstop Wilmer Flores.
Span finished 4-for-6. He reached base for a 33rd straight game and extended his hitting streak to 11 games ... Murphy was 3-for-6. He has collected multiple hits in four consecutive games ... Zimmermann allowed seven hits and struck out five in 6 1/3 innings ... deGrom gave up three runs on seven hits over six frames ... The Washington bullpen retired 15 straight batters after Granderson's game-tying single ... The Nationals reinstated catcher Wilson Ramos from the paternity list and optioned catcher Sandy Leon to Triple-A Syracuse shortly before the game's first pitch.