WASHINGTON (AP) — One costly error and another spotty start from Zack Wheeler cost the New York Mets a chance to win a series for the first time this month.
Wilson Ramos drove in four runs and Ian Desmond homered to help Jordan Zimmermann and the Washington Nationals beat the Mets 6-3 on Sunday.
Wheeler (1-4) went six innings, allowing five runs — three earned — and six hits, striking out five and walking one.
Ramos doubled in two runs in the third after shortstop Ruben Tejada's fielding error with a runner on and two outs kept the inning going.
"We can't make some of the mistakes that we're making," Mets manager Terry Collins said. "We've got to play solid baseball. We've certainly got to play crisper."
Catcher Juan Centeno's passed ball led to another run for Washington in the eighth.
For Wheeler, it was the third time he has allowed five runs or more in his last four starts after not allowing more than four runs in any of his first five outings.
"I felt great, probably the best I've felt all year," Wheeler said. "The balls were inside, but I guess not inside enough. I threw a couple good two-seamers in and they just did a nice job of hitting them."
Desmond's solo home run and second in two days tied the game in the second inning. Ramos drove in two more runs in the fifth to push Washington's lead to 5-1.
"It's been a bunch of bad starts in a row here, so I need to hurry up and turn it around and get back on the right track," Wheeler said. "Obviously, guys are starting to figure me out a little bit, and see what I have."
The Mets have not won a series since taking two of three against Miami in New York from April 25-27.
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