posted on Jun.02, 2012
It has finally happened! The New York Mets have a no-hitter, and what a fantastic way to have it happen, with the man who had a shoulder surgery that every “expert” said would never be the same, the man who one of the guys in the package for him has thrown a no-hitter, the man who has taken this Met team on his back every time he has taken the mound in a Met uniform. Johan Santana threw the first no-hitter in the history of the Amazin’s, and even this diehard Yankee fan was watching the Mets instead of the Yankees last night from the 7th inning on. What an accomplishment for Johan and every Mets fan out there.
I like Johan Santana, and this gave me many more reasons to, from his post-game acknowledgement of the fans to his locker room speech to his teammates. The locker room speech was the thing that particularly grabbed me, in that he told his teammates “Tonight we all made history. That’s all that matters. Thank s to you guys, because you guys make it happen. I was just doing my job, and having fun.” It wasn’t ‘I made history’, it was “WE made history”. Santana knew that it was with the help of his teammates he was able to accomplish the feat that no Met had ever done before, from Mike Baxter’s catch in the 7th to Murphy’s stab of a humpback liner in the 8th. I am not going to delve into the missed call on Beltran’s hit down the line, because those things happen, and it was nice to see it go the Mets’ way.
One thing to remember here right now is how Terry Collins fought himself to leave Santana out there. I mean, everyone watching TV could see that, he was constantly pacing up and down the dugout trying to decide if he should pull his Ace, the one who he needs to make sure stays healthy for the long haul. In the 8th, when Santana issued a 2 out walk, Collins came running out of the dugout, to a mound visit where he knew what would happen, he knew that Santana would never let give him the ball. And when all was said and done, Santana made him look good, tossing the first no-hitter in New York Metropolitans history. Collins was teary eyed afterward. Santana had said that Collins told him “you’re my hero”, and in the manager’s press-conference, when asked about it, Collins could barely speak he was so choked up. Johan Santana is a good pitcher to idolize, kids. He is a warrior who fought his way back, and will be forever remembered as a legend in the hearts and minds of Met fans for years to come.
One more note before we close this, listening to several Met fans (and hosts that were Mets fan) on WFAN this morning, one host made the perfect point, that it was perfect that the game was an SNY game so that Gary Cohen, a lifelong Mets fan, could have the TV call forever. And Howie Rose, the Mets radio voice and also a lifelong Mets fan, could have his voice forever linked to the first no-hitter in New York Mets history. I pity RA Dickey when he starts Saturday against the Cards to have to follow that act.
Enjoy it Mets fans, you have waited a long time, 8,020 games to be exact. In fact, the website dedicated to the fact that Mets had never had a no-hitter crashed immediately after the game from all the hits it received. What a sight. Enjoy it. After this weekend (and the nationally televised games that will inevitably talk about it), Mets fans never have to see that depressing graphic about the Mets no-hit futility. No-han indeed.