WASHINGTON - Mets reliever Jeurys Familia passed yet another test Tuesday night against the Nationals.
Just one day after he was touched up for a run in a tough loss to the Giants, Familia bounced back with a clean inning against the Nats.
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Manager Terry Collins said he insisted upon getting Familia into the game, which is why the setup man entered in the eighth inning with the Mets ahead by five runs.
"It's big, it's huge for him," Collins said. "He did what I wanted him to do. He went right after the hitters and with that sinker, he's going to get ground balls."
Familia allowed only a two-out double by Adam LaRoche. "When I came to the big leagues and I had a bad day, I was thinking too much," said Familia, who lowered his ERA to 1.93. "But right now, I'm just trying to forget that and get back the next day."
Sigh of relief
Closer Jenrry Mejia reported no lingering issues one day after feeling tightness in his lower back.
"He hit the side of the hole, the landing hole, and just tweaked his back," Collins said. "He's fine."
Meanwhile, centerfielder Juan Lagares got up slowly when making a diving catch in the seventh inning. But Lagares remained in the game after having the wind knocked out of him.
First baseman Lucas Duda started against lefty Gio Gonzalez but finished 0-for-3. Duda is hitting just .154 against lefties . . . Curtis Granderson did not start against Gonzalez, though he extended his hitless streak to 16 at-bats when he flied out as a pinch-hitter in the seventh. Collins said third baseman David Wright is due an off day with the team in the midst of 20 straight games.