MLB.com Columnist

Bill Ladson

Fister, 'pen combine for yet another Nats shutout

Fister, 'pen combine for yet another Nats shutout

NEW YORK -- Right-hander Doug Fister and the bullpen were outstanding during the Nationals' 1-0 victory over the Mets on Sunday afternoon at Citi Field.

Fister allowed five hits over 6 1/3 innings while striking out three batters. It was the antithesis of his last outing, in which he allowed five runs -- four earned -- in 5 2/3 innings against the Braves.

The only time Fister was in trouble against New York was in the first inning, when he allowed consecutive singles to Curtis Granderson and Juan Lagares to start the game, but the Mets couldn't push a run across.

"Location, fastball were the biggest thing," Fister said. "Early on, I made a few pitches that were up. We had to make a quick adjustment getting those [pitches] down. It was really a matter of throwing the changeup to offset the fastball and really locate the fastball."

According to manager Matt Williams, Fister was not happy when he was taken out of the game after allowing a one-out double to Kevin Plawecki in the seventh. Fister denied being upset about being removed from the game. He was more upset about allowing the double to Plawecki.

"When I was in the dugout, [pitching coach Steve McCatty] comes up to me and I kind of let off a little steam about throwing the changeup to Plawecki," Fister said. "That frustrates me -- throwing the ball like that and getting a double off my bad pitch."

After Fister left the game, the bullpen -- Tanner Roark, Matt Thornton, Aaron Barrett and Drew Storen -- blanked New York the rest of the way.

Storen shuts the door

The key inning from the bullpen occurred in the eighth. Thornton walked John Mayberry Jr. on four pitches. After Granderson grounded out, Thornton then walked Lagares to put runners on first and second. But Thornton was able to get Lucas Duda to strike out.

Barrett then entered the game and struck out Michael Cuddyer to end the threat.

Barrett maneuvers out of trouble

"Barrett has been pounding the strike zone. He has a strikeout slider and he threw a couple of them to Cuddyer to get him," Williams said. "The biggest pitch of the at-bat was probably the sinker in for a strike that [Cuddyer] fouled off. It opened the outside part of the plate for [Barrett]."

Bill Ladson is a reporter for MLB.com and writes an MLBlog, All Nats All the Time. He also can be found on Twitter @WashingNats. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.