Pinch-hitter Eric Campbell put New York ahead with his two-run single in the seventh inning, and a stagnant Mets lineup finally came through with several clutch hits to back Jacob deGrom in a 7-2 win over the Washington Nationals on Tuesday night.
Fresh off his dominant display in the All-Star Game a week ago, deGrom (10-6) allowed two runs and three hits over six innings in surpassing his win total from last season. He struck out eight without a walk to beat the division-rival Nationals for the first time in four tries.
The 2014 NL Rookie of the Year whiffed three American League batters on 10 pitches last Tuesday in Cincinnati.
After going 4 for 72 with runners in scoring position over their previous nine games, the Mets were 5 for 15 this time.
One of those hits was by Campbell, who was batting for deGrom when he knocked in Wilmer Flores and Kirk Nieuwenhuis to give New York a 3-2 lead.
Curtis Granderson, Ruben Tejada and Daniel Murphy added RBI singles in a four-run ninth following a costly throwing error by left fielder Matt den Dekker.
Wilson Ramos hit a two-run homer for Washington, which leads the NL East by two games over the Mets.
Rookie starter Joe Ross (2-2) gave up three runs — two earned — and four hits in 6 1-3 innings.
Flores singled to open the seventh. Nieuwenhuis followed with a bouncer up the first base line that deflected off Clint Robinson's glove and into foul territory for an error, putting runners on second and third.
After Kevin Plawecki popped out, reliever Aaron Barrett was brought in to face Campbell, who entered the game hitting .174.
The 22-year-old Ross was filling in for injured Stephen Strasburg and beginning his second stint with Washington.
The Nationals selected Ross' contract from Double-A Harrisburg on June 6, and the right-hander pitched to a 2.66 ERA in three starts.
He retired his first nine batters Tuesday before the Mets got to him in the fourth.
Granderson led off with a single and stole second. He moved to third on a groundout and scored on a single by Flores, who had two RBIs.
After deGrom faced the minimum through four, Yunel Escobar doubled to open the fifth. With two outs and Escobar on third, Ramos drove a 1-0 fastball just over the wall in right for his ninth homer of the season.
Mets: LF Michael Cuddyer was out of the starting lineup for the second straight night with a sore left knee. He walked as a pinch hitter in the ninth and scored.
Nationals: Strasburg (left oblique strain) threw his first bullpen session since going on the disabled list July 5. Manager Matt Williams said Strasburg threw about 30 pitches and had no issues. . INF Anthony Rendon (left quad strain) went 1 for 3 with two walks in his third rehab game with Class A Potomac.
Mets rookie Noah Syndergaard (4-5, 3.05 ERA) makes his 13th start Wednesday afternoon in the series finale. Syndergaard is 2-1 with a 1.55 ERA over his last four starts. He'll oppose Jordan Zimmermann (8-5, 3.27), who hasn't lost since June 17. He's 3-0 with a 1.99 ERA since that defeat.