Mets Shift Momentum, Hold on to First
NL East leaders end 5-game slide with 8-4 victory over Nats
By Katherine Thompson,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 20, 2007 2:36 AM CDT
New York Mets' Paul Lo Duca falls to the ground after being hit by a pitch in the eighth inning of their MLB baseball game against the Washington Nationals at RFK Stadium in Washington, Wednesday, Sept....   (Associated Press)
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(Newser) – The New York Mets finally dug in their heels to stop their five-game losing streak, beating the Nationals 8-4 last night. Buoyed by three hits from injured Moises Alou and two RBIs by newly shorn Paul Lo Duca, the Mets rose to the challenge issued during a players-only meeting: to play better, reports the New York Times.

The Mets still racked up three errors, but none of them were game-deciding. The win puts the Mets 2½ games up in the National League East. No team has ever blown a seven-game lead with 17 to play. The Mets held that comfortable lead a week ago, and now face a steep magic number of nine to avoid blowing it.