NEW YORK — Justin Verlander earned his 250th career victory in what could be his final start for the New York Mets, who beat the Washington Nationals 5-2 on Sunday after trading Max Scherzer to Texas.
Francisco Lindor homered and had three hits for the fourth-place Mets (50-55), who took three of four from last-place Washington. Pete Alonso drove in two runs.
After news of the agreement broke Saturday evening, the Mets and Rangers announced their deal involving Scherzer about 35 minutes before the first pitch Sunday at Citi Field.
New York also sent cash to Texas and received one of the Rangers’ top prospects in infielder Luisangel Acuña, the younger brother of Atlanta star Ronald Acuña Jr. New York said he will be optioned to Double-A Binghamton.
With Scherzer and closer David Robertson traded away in the past few days, it’s possible Verlander could be next as the disappointing Mets look to get younger and improve their farm system. The three-time Cy Young Award winner is signed through next season and has a no-trade clause.
Verlander (6-5) allowed one run in 5 1/3 innings to become the 49th major league pitcher to reach 250 wins.
Alonso had an RBI single and lifted one of New York’s two sacrifice flies in a three-run third against former teammate Trevor Williams (5-6).
Lindor homered in consecutive games for the fourth time this year. He reached base four times. Jeff McNeil hit a go-ahead triple and Omar Narváez also had a sacrifice fly in the third.
Making his 498th career start, Verlander gave up five hits in his third straight win. He walked off the mound to an ovation and tipped his cap to the crowd of 33,861 before accepting handshakes from teammates in the dugout.
The Mets signed Verlander to an $86.7 million, two-year contract in December shortly after Jacob deGrom signed a $185 million, five-year deal with Texas. That reunited Verlander and Scherzer, a pair of three-time Cy Young Award winners who were teammates in Detroit from 2010-14.
David Peterson, a candidate to fill Scherzer’s rotation spot, allowed an unearned run in 1 1/3 innings of relief. Adam Ottavino got the final two outs in the eighth, and Brooks Raley struck out three for his third save.
The Mets finished 14-8 in July after going 7-19 in June.
Washington opened the game with singles by CJ Abrams and Jeimer Candelario. The Nationals scored when Abrams stole home as the Mets threw to second.
Alonso’s RBI single tied it in the first, and Lindor scored on McNeil’s triple into the right-field corner to put New York ahead in the third. Lindor hit a solo homer to right for a 5-1 lead in the fourth after ending his 15-game homerless drought Saturday.