NEW YORK — Bryce Harper hit a home run so hard that it twice sailed over the head of Mets right fielder Jay Bruce, propelling Gio Gonzalez and the Washington Nationals past New York 8-3 Thursday night.

Harper lined a solo drive in the first inning that sailed about a dozen rows deep into the seats. The ball ricocheted out of the stands in a hurry and Bruce couldn’t catch the rebound, the carom flying far onto the grass.

Harper’s 17th home run left the bat at 116.3 mph, his hardest-hit ball since Statcast began tracking in 2015.

Daniel Murphy added three more hits against his former team and Michael A. Taylor hit the Nationals league-leading 100th home run to cap a five-run fifth. Manager Dusty Baker won on his 68th birthday, while Gio Gonzalez improved to 10-1 at Citi Field.