WASHINGTON (AP) -- Daniel Murphy and the Mets made sure their relievers had a lead even they could protect.
Murphy added to his stellar start, homering and driving in three runs to help John Maine and New York rout the Washington Nationals 12-0 Wednesday night."It was a good night for the manager," New York manager Jerry Manuel said with a laugh. "We needed to have an offensive night like this. That is huge for us."Murphy went 3-for-6 and scored twice and is batting .467 (14-for-30) since being called up from Triple-A New Orleans on Aug. 2. His RBI single drove in the first run of the eight-run third that gave New York a 10-0 lead and let most of the team's embattled bullpen take a night off.Murphy played a big role in the offensive outburst, something he's done regularly since being called up."He is getting it done," Mets catcher Brian Schneider said. "More than anything he is learning, learning the pitchers and learning what to do in the clubhouse. I know it has been a good experience for him. We can't expect him to do anything more."The eight-run third made it an easy night for Maine (10-7), making his first start since July 28. Maine, who was on the 15-day disabled list with a mild right rotator cuff strain, allowed one hit in five innings.He struck out six and walked four and was glad to keep the bullpen quiet."The bullpen has been getting up and down a lot," Maine said. "It made sense to take me out, but I would have liked to go one more inning."Brian Stokes pitched the final four innings to complete the four-hitter and get his first save.The Mets got a run in both the first and second innings before sending 13 batters to the plate in the third. They scored eight runs on just four hits off Washington starter Jason Bergmann (2-9), who walked five in a 51-pitch inning. The Nationals walked 11 in their sixth straight loss.David Wright and Carlos Delgado both reached base twice in the third. Wright walked and singled and scored twice while Delgado walked twice and scored once.Carlos Beltran added a two-run double while Murphy and Fernando Tatis had RBI singles. Bergmann even walked Maine with the bases loaded.Washington manager Manny Acta hoped to get 100 pitches or five innings from Bergmann to help rest his tired bullpen. The pitcher also was scheduled to bat second in the bottom of the third, so Acta let him finish the inning."He just couldn't get in a groove," Acta said. "He couldn't throw anything for a strike [and] just got hit around by a good team."Bergmann felt bad about his performance and apologized to teammates in the locker room. He allowed 10 runs on eight hits in three innings. The right-hander also walked six."[This game] is best remembered for forgetting," Bergmann said. "We'll play tomorrow."Maine walked a second time and Stokes got his second career hit as Mets pitchers reached base three times.Notebook: Commissioner Bud Selig was in town for the owners meetings and came to the game. ... Washington outfielder Ryan Langerhans left because of right side/lower back tightness after pinch-hitting in the fifth. ... Washington's Lastings Milledge extended his hitting streak to 15 games with a second-inning single. ... The Mets optioned pitcher Carlos Muniz to New Orleans before the game to open up a spot for Maine.