Best of MLB: Wilmer Flores' 3-run HR Keys Mets' Comeback Win Over Nationals

NEW YORK -- Wilmer Flores hit a go-ahead, three-run homer and the New York Mets rallied past the Washington Nationals 9-7 on Thursday night in the opener of a pivotal four-game series between the top teams in the NL East.

Travis d'Arnaud, Jose Reyes and Asdrubal Cabrera also went deep for New York in a slugfest that featured eight home runs -- most in the eight-year history of Citi Field. The second-place Mets improved to 7-1 on their 11-game homestand leading into the All-Star break and shaved Washington's division lead to three games -- two in the loss column.

The victory provided an emotional pick-me-up for the Mets, who announced sobering news before the game: Struggling pitcher Matt Harvey has symptoms consistent with thoracic outlet syndrome and might require season-ending surgery to treat a serious condition that has jeopardized the careers of other major league pitchers (see full recap).

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Perez gives Royals walk-off win
KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Salvador Perez ripped a double off the wall in the ninth inning, scoring Whit Merrifield and Jarrod Dyson and giving the Kansas City Royals a 4-3 victory over the Seattle Mariners on Thursday night.

Merrifield doubled off Steve Cishek (2-5) leading off the inning, then Kendrys Morales got plunked on the foot. Dyson came in to pinch run and Eric Hosmer struck out before Perez dug in to face the Mariners' closer

He lined a shot off the wall in center for his second career game-ending hit.

Brooks Pounders (1-0) tossed a scoreless inning for his first big league win, helping Kansas City bounce back after a dismal road trip, during which they were swept in Toronto and lost five of their last six games (see full recap).

Pomeranz, Padres shut out Dodgers
LOS ANGELES -- Drew Pomeranz tossed two-hit ball over seven innings, Melvin Upton Jr. homered leading off the game and the San Diego Padres beat the Dodgers 6-0 on Thursday night in a rough comeback for Los Angeles starter Hyun-Jin Ryu.

Pomeranz (8-7) struck out six and walked two in his third straight start of seven innings with one run or less. The left-hander has 26 strikeouts in his last 27 innings. He helped himself offensively, singling in a run with two outs in the second for a 2-0 lead.

Ryu (0-1) got a rude welcome back to the major leagues, giving up six runs and eight hits in 4 2/3 innings with four strikeouts and two walks. The South Korean left-hander was reinstated earlier Thursday from the 60-day disabled list to make his first major league start since Sept. 12, 2014. He had shoulder surgery in May 2015, causing him to miss all of last season (see full recap).

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