Murph 'thought I had a chance' at homer

May, 16, 2014
May 16
11:21
PM ET
Jayson WerthGreg Fiume/Getty ImagesJayson Werth catches the final out of the game.
WASHINGTON -- Daniel Murphy said closer Rafael Soriano got the final pitch of Friday's game inside just enough to prevent a game-tying three-run homer.

After consecutive two-out walks to Juan Lagares and Eric Young Jr. in the ninth, Murphy sent a shot to the very top of the right-field wall. Jayson Werth made sure it stayed in the park with a game-ending catch.

"I thought I had a chance," Murphy said after the 5-2 loss to the Washington Nationals. "My heart of hearts, I knew it was going to be close. He crowded me just a little bit, got it in on me just a hair. I knew it was going to be tight. Jayson made a good play on it."

Werth said he could not tell whether the ball would have cleared the wall.

"When it was hit, I figured it was right about where it was at," he said. "I think the rain might have knocked it down a little bit, gave me a better chance. It was close. I know he hit it good. [Anthony] Recker Recker hit that ball good, too, to start off the inning. I think the mist might have helped us out a little bit."

Jonathon Niese allowed five runs (three earned) in a season-low four innings as his ERA climbed to 2.54.

"I just couldn't get in a rhythm, fell behind," Niese said. "I wasn't able to execute pitches when I needed to. When that happens, it's tough for the defense to stay on their toes."

Murphy, though, noted that he and David Wright failed to make plays behind Niese in a three-run first inning by the Nats.

"That first inning, unfortunately, David misplays a ball. I misplay a double-play ball," Murphy said. "We kind of put him into trouble. I thought he settled down nicely after that and could have gone deeper into the game, most certainly."

Said Niese: "I've been feeling good lately. I felt OK tonight. Like I said, I didn't execute pitches when I needed to."
Adam Rubin has covered the Mets since 2003. He's a graduate of Mepham High School on Long Island and the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania. He joined ESPNNewYork after spending 10 years at the New York Daily News.
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TEAM LEADERS

WINS LEADER
Bartolo Colon
WINS ERA SO IP
14 4.02 143 190
OTHER LEADERS
BAD. Murphy .295
HRL. Duda 28
RBIL. Duda 86
RD. Murphy 76
OPSL. Duda .832
ERAZ. Wheeler 3.49
SOZ. Wheeler 180