NEW YORK (AP) - Michael Taylor homered in his big league debut, setting off a silly sequence to retrieve the souvenir, and the Washington Nationals backed Doug Fister with four long shots Tuesday night in a 7-1 romp over the New York Mets.
Bryce Harper homered early, then Anthony Rendon, Ian Desmond and Taylor connected in the sixth inning as the NL East leaders won their ninth straight at Citi Field.
Promoted from Triple-A over the weekend, Taylor singled in his first at-bat and later hit a two-run drive the opposite way at one of the majors' most spacious parks.
A ball boy ran out to right field to pick up Taylor's home run ball, but mistakenly tossed it to a young fan in the stands. Alerted to his error, the ball boy and a couple of security guards quickly worked out a trade of another ball to reclaim the prize.
Taylor finished 2 for 4. The 23-year-old outfielder hit a combined .315 with 22 homers and 35 stolen bases in the minors this season, almost all of it at Double-A.
Fister (12-3) came back from a 25-minute rain delay and pitched seven shutout innings. He gave up seven hits, walked none and struck out three. Fister also hit a single for good measure after a 1-for-30 start at the plate this year.
Asdrubal Cabrera added two doubles and a single as the Nationals improved to 23-4 at Citi Field dating to 2011. The only Washington starter who didn't get on base was leadoff man Denard Span, ending his 14-game hitting streak and his string of reaching safely at 36 games.
Rafael Montero (0-3) was tagged for three homers and five runs in five-plus innings. He was called up from Triple-A Las Vegas earlier in the day after impressive rookie Jacob deGrom went on the disabled list with rotator cuff tendinitis.
Mets star David Wright singled twice, giving him an 11-game hitting streak.
Nationals: RF Jayson Werth went to see a doctor about his aching right shoulder, but was available to play. Manager Matt Williams said Werth's shoulder was "inflamed and sore," yet added, "I don't think it's a DL situation."
Mets: RHP Matt Harvey (Tommy John surgery) might not pitch in any games until spring training. Harvey kept saying he wanted to throw in the majors this year while the Mets thought outings in the Arizona Fall League or instructional ball were more realistic. But general manager Sandy Alderson says Harvey and the team will now talk about cutting back on Harvey's work and limit him to bullpen sessions. Alderson was concerned that RHP Jeremy Hefner recently had a setback in his recovery from Tommy John surgery and might need more reconstructive work. "My sense is that Matt will at least take this into account, as we will," Alderson said.
Fresh off his 200th career win, Mets RHP Bartolo Colon (11-9, 3.97) starts Wednesday night vs. Nationals RHP Jordan Zimmermann (7-5, 3.06). Ian Desmond has tagged Colon, going 3 for 6 with two homers lifetime against him. Zimmermann is 1-1 in his last six starts.