Johan Santana celebrates after his no-hitter on Friday, the first in Mets' franchise history. (AP)
Tom Seaver never did it. Neither did Nolan Ryan, Jerry Koosman, Dwight Gooden, David Cone, Ron Darling or any other pitcher who ever received a start in the first 50-plus seasons and 8,019 games in the history of the New York Mets franchise.
Johan Santana, though, now stands alone. After more than a half-century of near-misses and ill-timed fortune, the Mets' current ace finally landed the first no-hitter in franchise history in an 8-0 win over the St. Louis Cardinals Friday night at Citi Field.
''Finally, the first one,'' Santana told reporters. ''That is the greatest feeling ever.''
Watch Santana finally fill the big Mets' big resume hole with the final out. (The jorts-wearing Mets fan with the Gary Carter jersey adds a nice touch to the highlight, doesn't he?)
The achievement didn't come easy or without controversy. Santana needed a career-high 134 pitches to get through the last out of the ninth inning — a strikeout of World Series hero David Freese — and also received a gift when a Carlos Beltran line drive in the sixth inning hit the left field line and looked like it was incorrectly ruled foul (watch it here). But ask Mets fans if they care. They don't — and they shouldn't. Santana's no-no will go down as one of the greatest moments in franchise history. That it came against the Cardinals, who put the Mets' recent run of bad luck into motion with the 2006 NLCS defeat, only made it more delicious. (One more fact to consider: The Mets are now just one game out of first place in the NL East.)
With Santana removing the Mets from the list, the San Diego Padres are now the only team to have never thrown a no-hitter. That franchise's drought now stands at 6,893 games.
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