The New York Mets had a season to forget in 2012. After a strong first half, the team took a nosedive after the All-Star break and faded into baseball oblivion. However, there were some memorable moments. Here are the top five highlights from the 2012 campaign.
'Spin for the Win (May 7) -- It was the most improbable hit of the year. Rookie Jordany Valdespin blasted a pinch-hit three-run home run in the ninth inning off Philadelphia Phillies closer Jonathan Papelbon, as the Mets stunned Philly, 5-2, at Citizens Bank Park. Incredibly, it was his first big league hit. Valdespin proceeded to set a franchise record for most pinch-hit homers in a season with five.
Hello, Harvey! (July 26) -- Highly-touted pitching prospect Matt Harvey lived up to the hype in his Major League debut against the Arizona Diamondbacks, striking out 11 batters in 3-1 victory. Harvey, a first-round pick of the Mets in 2010, set a franchise record for strikeouts in a debut and became the first pitcher since 1900 to whiff double-digits and collect two base hits in his first big league game.
All Wright (Sept. 26) -- Add "most hits in franchise history" to David Wright's growing list of accomplishments. The Mets' homegrown third baseman collected career base hit No. 1,420 in a game against the Pittsburgh Pirates to surpass Ed Kranepool on the club's all-time list. Wright now holds the franchise records for most RBIs, total bases, runs scored and bases on balls.
Dickey Deals No. 20 (Sept. 27) -- R.A. Dickey put an exclamation point on a storybook season by beating the Pittsburgh Pirates, 6-5, to win his 20th game of the season. He became the first Mets pitcher to win 20 games since Frank Viola did it in 1990. Dickey, who set a franchise record for consecutive scoreless innings at 32.2 in 2012, made a strong case for winning the Cy Young Award.
Santana No-Hitter (June 1) -- Johan Santana etched his name in Mets lore by tossing the first no-hitter in franchise history as New York beat the St. Louis Cardinals, 8-0, at Citi Field. In an eerie coincidence, Santana struck out eight batters (and Mets had eight hits), the same uniform number of former catcher Gary Carter, who passed away before the season started. Unfortunately, Santana needed a career-high 134 pitches to complete the game and wasn't the same pitcher the rest of the season.
Adam Martini is a freelance sportswriter who grew up in Queens, N.Y. with a view of Shea Stadium from his bedroom window. He spent many nights in the upper deck at Shea rooting for the Mets. Adam follows back Mets fans on Twitter @PegCitySports.Sources
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