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Patrick Corbin struggles as Nationals get shut out by rival Mets

NEW YORK — Taijuan Walker pitched three-hit ball over seven innings in his first win for the Mets, J.D. Davis hit a two-run homer in the first off a faltering Patrick Corbin and New York beat Washington 4-0 Sunday to take two of three in the matchup of NL East rivals.

Corbin lost his 10th straight decision dating to last August.

Walker (1-1), who signed a $23 million, three-year contract as a free agent, made his fourth start.

He allowed a pair of leadoff runners but picked off Josh Harrison in the first and got help in the third when Victor Robles was throwing out trying to stretch a leadoff double to right, with Michael Conforto throwing to second baseman Jonathan Villar, who made the toss to Davis at third for the tag.

Albert Alomar Jr. made a running, leaping catch at the center-field wall of a Kyle Schwarber drive to end the sixth and save twos runs.

Walker struck out four and walked three.

Miguel Castro struck out Ryan Zimmerman and Josh Bell to escape a two-on jam in the eighth, and Edwin Díaz finished the five-hitter with a perfect ninth for the Mets’ second shutout of the series and third this season.

Davis had three hits, raising his average to .414.

Corbin (0-3) allowed four runs, seven hits and three walks in four-plus innings, lowering his ERA from 10.95 to 10.47. He is 0-10 in 11 starts since winning at Citi Field last Aug. 10.

Davis’ homer, which followed Pete Alonso’s walk, gave him four homers in 27 at-bats.

Yadiel Hernández had two hits for the Nationals.

AROUND THE HORN

A player was thrown out at every base Sunday. Villar was picked off first by Corbin in the second, when the tag was made by shortstop Trea Turner. Francisco Lindor was thrown out at home in the fifth trying to score on Conforto’s flyout to left — he was called safe at first by plate umpire Doug Eddings, a call reversed in a video review. Brandon Nimmo was thrown out by catcher Yan Gomes trying to steal second in the seventh.

RACING TOWARDS HERD IMMUNITY

Nationals manager Dave Martinez said more players have received the COVID-19 vaccine and he expects the team to reach the 85% threshold required to loosen protocols. Washington had 11 players either test positive for the virus or exposed to a teammate who had the virus prior to opening day. “We’re getting closer, we’re getting closer — hopefully it’ll happen real soon,” said Martinez, who received his second dose nine days ago.

TRAINER’S ROOM

Nationals: Martinez said LF Juan Soto (left shoulder) felt good after hitting off a tee Saturday. … RHP Wander Suero (left oblique) emulated his mechanics without throwing a baseball Saturday. … RHP Stephen Strasburg (right shoulder) threw from 120 feet Saturday and plans to do so again Monday. … LHP Jon Lester (COVID-19) was scheduled to throw 90 pitches in a simulated game Sunday.

Mets: RHP Drew Smith (right shoulder) faced batters Saturday at the Mets’ spring training complex in Florida. … RHP Seth Lugo (right elbow surgery) has thrown two bullpens.

UP NEXT

Nationals: RHP Max Scherzer (1-1, 1.80 ERA), who has thrown 17 1/3 consecutive scoreless innings, opens a two-game interleague series Tuesday against Toronto in Dunedin, Florida.

Mets: LHP David Peterson (1-2, 6.75 ERA) starts Tuesday’s series opener against Boston. Peterson earned the win against the Red Sox in his big league debut at Fenway Park last July 28.

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