Mets-Nationals game suspended in 3rd inning after nearly 4-hour rain delay

WASHINGTON (AP) — The game between the New York Mets and Washington Nationals was suspended with the Nationals leading 1-0 in the third inning after a rain delay of 3 hours, 56 minutes on Saturday.

The game will be continued as part of a split-admission doubleheader on Sunday.

“What are you gonna do? Weather doesn’t cooperate. Field’s unplayable," Mets manager Buck Showalter said. “We all wanted to play. Obviously nobody wants to play a split doubleheader. Grounds crew was great. They did a great job trying to get it ready. So much water.”

The Nationals' decision to play a split doubleheader on Mother's Day after Saturday's lengthy delay was not popular.

“Prize for worst Mother’s Day decision goes to whoever decided this was the best plan,” one fan responded to the announcement on the Nationals Twitter feed.

“Lack of consideration for the fans, especially making it a split double header. Shameful,” said another.

A light rain was falling when the game began at 4:05 p.m. EDT and soon intensified, but play continued.

“They kept getting a report that it was going to stop, and it kept moving in and filling in right behind it,” Showalter said.

The Mets had runners on second and third after a one-out double by Michael Perez when the game was halted.

“We tried to play through it, but the field was getting really wet and we started to see puddles," Nationals manager Dave Martinez said. “I thought Paul and the umpires did a great job by just stopping it right there,” he added, referring to crew chief Paul Emmel.

After the rain stopped, the tarp came off the field at around 7 p.m. Showalter and Martinez inspected the infield, and the grounds crew continued to work on it.

At one point the fans remaining at Nationals Park, including a large contingent of Mets loyalists behind the visitors dugout, began a chant of “Let's play baseball.” That soon turned to booing as the grounds crew continued to work and the game was eventually suspended at 8:39 p.m.

“You're stepping (on the dirt) and water's coming in behind your foot, and it's only gonna get worse,” said Showalter, adding that there was agreement between the teams, the umpiring crew and MLB not to continue. “They tried everything to get it playable. There's a safety issue there too. Feel bad for the fans though.”

The Nationals got an RBI single from Joey Meneses in the first inning and loaded the bases with one out. Former Mets player Dominic Smith took a called strike on a 3-0 pitch that appeared out of the zone and soon grounded into an inning-ending double play.

The Mets have allowed first-inning runs in seven straight games.


Mets: RHP Dominic Leone, who experienced elbow discomfort while warming up in the ninth inning on Friday, played catch Saturday to test the elbow and was available to pitch according to Showalter.


Mets: The Mets did not announce their pitcher for the continuation of Saturday's game. ... RHP Max Scherzer (2-2, 5.56 ERA), who was scratched from his scheduled start Tuesday in Cincinnati with neck spasms, will pitch the second game. Scherzer is 2-0 with a 3.06 ERA against his former team since he joined the Mets.

Nationals: The Nationals have not yet named a pitcher for the continuation. ... RHP Jake Irvin (1-0, 0.84), who tossed 6 1/3 scoreless innings against the Giants on May 8 for his first major league win, will start the second game.


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