-edged to mid-off and Sam Billings - bacin
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NEW YORK -- Daniel Murphy keeps turning those Citi Field boos into booms.Murphy hit his seventh home run this year against the team that let him go last winter, lining an early drive off the facing of the upper deck and leading the Washington Nationals over the New York Mets 3-2 Sunday.That guys the real deal. Hes definitely a cyborg right now, winning pitcher Gio Gonzalez said.You dont know what to throw him, he said. You might have to throw him pingpong balls.Murphy tops the majors with a .348 batting average at the All-Star break, boosted by the damage hes done to the Mets. He homered three times and drove in 10 runs as the NL East leaders took three of four in this series, opening a six-game edge over New York.Murphy, as usual, deflected any notion hes the main reason his team is soaring.Carry it? No, no, no, he said. The list is too many. Just a small piece of it.As for his own impressive first half that includes 46 extra-base hits and 66 RBI?I would say Im surprised, Murphy said.Murphy connected in the first inning for his 17th homer this year. Overall, he is 22 for 52 (.423) with 21 RBI vs. his old club.I dont think its just against us. Hes hitting like .350, losing pitcher Steven Matz said.I dont have any answer, he said.If theres any consolation for Mets manager Terry Collins, hell soon have Murphy back on his side, albeit for just a day -- Collins is guiding the NL team in the All-Star Game on Tuesday night in San Diego, and Murphy is on the squad.The Nationals posted their 54th win, matching the 1994 Montreal Expos for the most in franchise history before the break.Very pleased with the first half we had, said first-year Nationals manager Dusty Baker. We know we can get even better.Jose Reyes hit two home runs for the Mets, including a leadoff shot in the first inning. He connected in his first two at-bats, then took three wild swings his next time up and struck out.Gonzalez (5-8) pitched into the sixth as the Nats won their third straight against the Mets and beat them for the ninth time in 13 matchups this year. The lefty had lost seven of his previous eight decisions, but regained his touch in a ballpark where hes now 8-1.Tanner Roark made his first relief appearance of the season, replacing Gonzalez and retiring seven straight batters. He went seven innings last Wednesday for a win.Jonathan Papelbon pitched the ninth for his 19th save in 21 chances. His 368th career save moved him past Jeff Reardon into ninth place on the all-time list.Matz (7-5) fell to 0-4 in his last eight starts. He gave up an RBI single to All-Star Wilson Ramos in the third that put Washington ahead 3-1, and left after the seventh.It took Murphy less than two months to go from valued ex-player to villain at his former home. Murphy drew two standing ovations and got a video tribute when he returned for the first time in mid-May.The longtime second baseman whose playoff slugging helped the Mets reach the World Series last year got jeered every time he came to the plate on this afternoon. He managed to make at least one new fan, however -- after chasing down a popup that landed in foul territory, he pointed to a young person in the stands and tossed the souvenir that way.TRAINERS ROOMMets: OF Yoenis Cespedes (strained right quadriceps) hasnt started since getting hurt Friday night. Collins said it was unlikely the slugger wouldve been able to pinch-hit. ... OF Alejandro De Aza twice knocked himself down with foul balls in the fourth. He got checked and stayed in.LOOKING AHEADNationals star Bryce Harper has played vs. every opposing team in the majors except Cleveland, but could see Indians pitcher Corey Kluber in the All-Star Game -- in the next month, the Nats take on Cleveland four times. Major league wins leader Chris Sale could start for the AL, and Harper has faced him once, in the 2013 All-Star Game at Citi Field. Lined out to third, he remembered.UP NEXTNationals: Open a nine-game homestand next Friday, starting with Pittsburgh. The Dodgers and Padres later visit Washington.Mets: Start a three-game series at Philadelphia on Friday. RHP Noah Syndergaard, who left his last start with arm fatigue, will pitch at the back end of the rotation coming out of the break, Collins said. Adam Jones Jersey . The parade and rally were held to celebrate the Saskatchewan Roughriders 45-23 win over the Hamilton Tiger-Cats on Sunday in the CFLs championship game. Frank Robinson Jersey . LOUIS -- Roman Polak was celebrating even before Alexander Steen scored the winning goal in Saturdays 4-2 win over the Carolina Hurricanes. http://www.oriolesjerseyscheap.com/?tag=zach-britton-jersey . After a replay, the winner will meet Sunderland in the quarterfinals. Sagbo did well to control Sone Alukos right cross and fire past Brighton goalkeeper Peter Brezovan. Aluko was making his first start in four months after recovering from an Achilles injury. Jonathan Schoop Jersey . LOUIS -- Mike Smith is used to facing plenty of shots, so this was nothing new. Orioles Jerseys From China . Haas said he "felt a lot of pain" in his right shoulder when he slammed his racket to the ground in frustration after losing his serve at 3-3 in the first set.South Africa thrashed England by nine wickets, with AB de Villiers crunching a 21-ball fifty, in the second T20I in Johannesburg, securing a 2-0 series triumph. De Villiers (71 off 29 balls) hit his fastest fifty in T20Is on Sunday and Hashim Amla was unbeaten with 69 off 38 as the home side chased down their 172-run target inside 15 overs. AB de Villiers smashed his fastest T20I fifty in South Africas series-clinching win England collapsed from 157-3 to being bowled out in 19.4 overs after Jos Buttler had smashed 54 off 28 balls, putting on 96 with Eoin Morgan (38 off 23).After England were put into bat, Jason Roy was dropped first ball by JP Duminy at cover, but couldnt make the most of the extra life in a tortured 15-ball stay at the crease, mis-timing his way to nine before being bowled by Kagiso Rabada (2-28). Reaction from South Africa hero AB de Villiers England had mustered only 10 runs from the first 2.5 overs but Joe Root (34) cracked his first ball for four, one of four he hit, and two sixes, in an enterprising 17-ball stay at the crease.Just as the runs were starting to flow, the introduction of Imran Tahir (1-25) in the eight over - fresh from his 4-21 in the first T20I - brought a double breakthrough, Root holing out at long off, and then Alex Hales (16) run out next ball to reduce England to 61-3. Jos Buttler was back on form for England with fifty Morgan and Buttler recovered things, targeting David Wiese (0-40) to particular good effect, Buttler powerfully pulling one six into the top tier at The Wanderers, and Morgan hitting back-to-back boundary clearers in the 13th over, which cost 17. Alex Hales is run out as captain Eoin Morgan calls for a second run but leaves Hales stranded by a distance It prompted Faf du Plessis to bowl Duminy in favour of Wiese completing his four overs and Buttler promptly despatched him for two further sixes, the second one straight down the ground again finding the top tier.ddddddddddddut a ball after bringing up his fifty with his fourth maximum, Buttler perished picking out the man at cover off the toe end of his bat, and England collapsed, losing seven for 14.Morgan was unfortunate to be run out next ball, with Ben Stokes striking the ball straight back to Kyle Abbott (3-26) who flicked it onto the stumps with the skipper stranded. Kyle Abbott celebrates the wicket of Eoin Morgan Stokes was next to fall, caught and bowled by Chris Morris (2-33), given on review having initially been thought to be a bump ball, while Moeen Ali picked out cover point later in the same over.South Africa had two in two again in the 19th over, Abbott finding himself on a hat-trick as Chris Jordan top-edged to mid-off and Sam Billings - back in the side for David Willey - pulled straight to square leg. Eoin Morgan says he is optimistic going into the ICC World T20 in India, despite Sundays defeat Topley survived, but Rabada wrapped things up soon after, bowling Rashid with a terrific yorker with two balls to spare in Englands innings.The torment continued for the visitors, and for Topley - whose fumbled run-out attempt in the final-ball defeat on Friday cost England - as De Villiers crunched his first ball for four, and smashed six straight later in the over.There would be greater punishment for Jordan, De Villiers blasting two further fours and sixes with the third over going for 22, and Amla hitting four fours in the 19-run fifth.De Villiers brought up his fifty, and South Africas hundred, inside seven overs, but finally fell in the ninth, failing to clear the cover boundary, picking out Root.Rashid thought he had Amla lbw next ball and although it was shown to be hitting the stumps on replay, the umpire didnt give the decision with Amla getting a good stride in to the leg-spinner.Amla notched his own half-century - off 27 balls - in the 12th over, and he and captain Du Plessis (22no) saw South Africa to a comprehensive win with 32 balls to spare.Join us for live coverage of the ICC World T20 live on Sky Sports in March. 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