No "No-No's" No More

Going into last night's action, two current Major League teams had never tossed a no-hitter. The gem turned in by Johan Santana last night drops that number to just one, The San Diego Padres. Santana mixed in 5 walks en route to his 134 pitch masterpiece. The Mets franchise has been active since 1962, making it fifty years, and 8000+ games, without a no-hitter. Over 30 times, the club had recorded 1-hitters, including the famed Seaver bid in 1969 broken up with 1 out in the 9th. Friday night, Santana was finally able to break the no hit spell and bring Met fans the teams's first no-no.

This historic outing could indicate signs that Santana's still got some miles on his arm. Considered the game's best pitcher up until a few years ago, Santana, 33, has battled injury and declining numbers of late. After securing two Cy Young Awards for the Twins, Santana was brought in to push the Mets over the hump after the meltdown of 2007. During his first Met campaign, he looked as advertised posting a 16-7 record and an ERA title. After that, myriad injuries caused him to lose periods of time during the next two seasons. The injuries culminated in Santana missing the entire 2011 season. During these injury plagued seasons of 2009-2011, the Mets finished in 4th place each time.

It's a little early yet, but Santana appears to be close to his old form this season. He still has to contend with an oft anemic offense, but his ERA is under 2.50 and he's averaging almost 7 innings per start. He also has already tossed 2 shutouts (including the no-no), matching his career season high by June 1. Further, his 9.0 K's per nine innings is something he hasn't accomplished since the Minnesota days. Biases aside (I'm the lone Met fan of FBJ), it looks promising in New York for the first time in a long while. The Mets have a young core that enjoy playing and are coming up big in a tough NL East. Having their Ace in Johan Santana back to form could propel them to exceed expectations in 2012.

Fun Fact:

Some former Mets that tossed no-hitters with other teams.
Nolan Ryan (7 times) - Angels, Astros, Rangers
Tom Seaver - Reds
Mike Scott - Astros
Bret Saberhagen - Royals
Al Leiter - Marlins
Dwight Gooden - Yankees
David Cone - Yankees
Philip Humber - White Sox (interestingly, part of the deal that brought Santana to The Mets)


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