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Harper hits hard home run, propels Nationals over Mets 8-3

Bryce Harper hit a home run so hard that it twice sailed over the head of Mets right fielder Jay Bruce, propelling Gio Gonzalez and the Washington Nationals past NY 8-3 Thursday night. With Scherzer set to face Steven Matz in the pitching matchup, the over/under now sits at 7.5 runs, down from the original number of 8. Murphy is 42-for-107 (.393) with eight homers, 28 RBI, eight doubles and 20 runs scored and 10 walks against the Mets.Scherzer (8-4) won for the fourth time in five starts, starting 26 of 29 batters with strikes. He never threw more than 16 pitches in an inning until the eighth.The final battle of the night symbolized an outing in which Scherzer relied more on his grit than his pure stuff.Murphy tripled, singled twice and drove in two runs. Kelvin Herrera pitched the ninth for his 14th save.Jose Ramirez added three hits as Cleveland climbed one game behind first-place Minnesota.He walked two and hit two batters with changeups, and his 118 pitches were his most since May 11 a year ago. He earned a 3-1 count before getting the green light.CINCINNATI – Alex Wood allowed a run in eight stellar innings to remain unbeaten and Los Angeles defeated Cincinnati.Wood (7-0) lost his shutout when Devin Mesoraco homered in the eighth. “When he starts walking around with that big, long pace that he’s got, he’s locked in”. Washington’s lead ballooned to 6-1. The right-hander has 45 strikeouts over his last five starts. He became the first White Sox player to go deep in four straight games since Alex Rios in April 2013.Joc Pederson had a solo homer off Tim Adleman (4-3), who gave up two runs in six innings. He matched a season high with eight strikeouts.After 5 1/2 innings, the Nats lead the Mets 4-0. The Mets were believed to have the top staff in the National League and were ahead of the Nationals in that area, but we all know how the injury bug has provided one or more setbacks in their quest to overtake the defending divisional champions. Peralta advanced to third on Paul Goldschmidt’s single off Pat Neshek and scored on Lamb’s fly.Gonzalez (6-1) gave up two hits and five hits in seven innings.The Cubs won for just the third time in nine games.Bruce, though got to the weak link of the Nationals pitching woes, the bullpen hitting a line drive homer to right in the ninth inning. He has whiffed 58 and walked just seven during his double-digit strikeout streak. Reyes finished 2-for-3 batting out of the eight spot. Matz will be making his second start of the season Friday.Sale allowed four hits with 10 strikeouts, upping his MLB-leading total to 136. In his opening start of the season, he won at Atlanta last weekend. He struck out five in 5 2/3 innings. He allowed one run and six hits over seven innings at Atlanta.Red Sox 2, Astros 1: Mookie Betts hit a tiebreaking home run in the eighth, sending visiting Boston over Houston. Harper connected with Gsellman’s next offering, pulling it to right field.Joe Kelly (3-0) got two outs for the win, while Craig Kimbrel threw a ideal ninth for his 19th save.Thames hit his 19th homer when he hit a 1-1 pitch over the center field wall off Ryan Buchter.UP NEXT: Game three of the four-game set.Carlos Gomez hit a three-run homer as Texas totaled 13 hits.