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Nationals’ lefty Gio Gonzalez on keys to his success in Citi Field: “Might be the weather. Food, airplanes. I don’t know.”

Gio Gonzalez improved to (11-1) in 16 career starts in Citi Field, earning the decision in Tuesday’s 5-2 win over the Mets.

Washington Nationals v New York Mets Photo by Mike Stobe/Getty Images

Last time out before Tuesday night in New York, Gio Gonzalez gave up five hits, three walks, and three runs, two earned, in a five-inning, 106-pitch outing against the Colorado Rockies, with the left-hander taking a loss.

Gonzalez talked after that start about Rockies’ hitters running his pitch count up with their approach at the plate.

“They just kept fouling some good pitches off and worked the pitch count,” he explained, “and spit on pitches that were close to pretty good pitches, and they did a good job.

“They kept on fouling off pitches, working the count, and working my pitch count up.”

On Tuesday, the Washington Nationals’ left-hander was back in Citi Field, where he was (10-1) in 15 career starts, with a 1.69 ERA, 35 walks, 92 Ks, and a .167/.247/.259 line against in 95 23 innings pitched.

Gonzalez was taking on a Mets’ team he held to six hits, three walks, and one earned run in 5 13 IP in his April 7th start against New York in Nationals Park.

Informed of Gonzalez’s history of success in the Mets’ home before tonight’s game, Nats’ skipper Davey Martinez was not pleased with the reporter who mentioned it.

MLB: Washington Nationals at New York Mets Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports

“Why would you say that right now?” he joked, before offering his thoughts on what might be behind Gonzalez’s success in New York.

“Some players they feel really good pitching in different ballparks and hitting in different ballparks, and I just hope that Gio gets to be (11-1),” Martinez said.

Gonzalez tossed four scoreless to start, on 73 pitches, as the Nationals jumped out to a 3-0 lead, but he ran into trouble the fifth, giving up back-to-back hits, a single by Zack Wheeler and a double by Amed Rosario, before a sac fly and a groundout brought home New York’s first runs of the game, 3-2 after five.

Martinez went to the bullpen after Gonzalez gave up back-to-back hits with one out in the sixth that put runners on the corners. Sammy Solis threw a 2-2 fastball by Jose Reyes for a foul-tip strike three and out No. 2, and then popped Amed Rosario up to preserve the one-run lead.

Gio Gonzalez’s Line: 5.1 IP, 8 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 2 BB, 5 Ks, 97 P, 59 S, 7/2 GO/FO.

The Nationals added to their lead with runs in the seventh and eighth, and took the second game of three with the Mets by a final score of 5-2.

Ryan Madson, Brandon Kintzler, and closer Sean Doolittle, in that order, followed Gonzalez and Solis on the mound, locking down the win.

“The best thing about today’s outing was our bullpen,” Gonzalez told reporters after the win.

“The guys were solid, they did a great job. [Pedro] Severino called a hell of a game, kept us in the game as much as you can, and then the bullpen was just incredible.

“They were fantastic tonight.”

Gonzalez put together a decent start as well. “He was really good,” Martinez said.

“He got a little frustrated because he couldn’t get the pitcher out. And we’ve had an issue with that, we really have. I think pitchers are hitting against us like .600. But you know what, he did a great job.”

Martinez didn’t have much more to say when he was asked about Gonzalez’s success in Citi Field after the game either.

“He’s really good anywhere really,” the Nats’ skipper said.

“And he’s competitive, just as competitive as anybody we’ve got, so he’s going to give us six, seven innings every time he goes out there, and it’s fun to watch. He keeps us in the game.”

Gonzalez’s take on his success in Citi Field?

“Might be the weather,” he said. “Might be the weather. Food, airplanes. I don’t know. It’s a beautiful ballpark. That’s pretty much it.”