After more than 50 years, Johan Santana threw the first no-hitter in Mets history on Friday night, leading the Mets to an 8-0 victory over the St. Louis Cardinals.
Aided by an umpire’s blown call and an amazing catch by Mike Baxter, who grew up in Queens as a Mets fan, Santana’s start is also the first no-hitter of his career.
Santana, who missed the 2011 season thanks to shoulder surgery, walked five batters and struck out eight, while at the same time testing the limits of his comeback.
Mets manager Terry Collins said prior to the game that he wanted to limit Santana to a max of 110-115 pitches. Santana finished with a career-high 134.
After the game, Collins discussed going after history versus preserving Santana’s health.
“I just couldn’t take him out,” Collins said.
In the top of the ninth inning with 27,609 fans all on their feet, Santana’s last pitch, a 3-2 change-up, resulted in David Freese swinging and missing to end the game. Santana’s teammates all stormed the mound.
Santana said he’s never thrown a no-hitter at any level.
“I don’t think I’ve ever even thrown a no-hitter in video games,” Santana said.
The San Diego Padres, a team established in 1969, are now the only MLB team without a no-hitter.
More in the video below.