Flushing, NY – Johan Santana threw the first no-hitter in Mets history Friday night as New York blanked the St. Louis Cardinals, 8-0.
Santana struck out eight and walked five en route to the 275th no-hitter in Major League Baseball history.
The no-no came in the 8,020th game for the Mets, who have been on the other side of a no-hitter six times in their 51 seasons.
Santana's bid for his first career no-hitter almost came to an end in the seventh, when Yadier Molina stroked a deep liner to left. Mike Baxter made an incredible catch as he violently crashed into the outfield wall to preserve the feat. Baxter appeared to injure his shoulder on the play and left the game.
"(Baxter's catch) was amazing. When Yadier (Molina) hit the ball I just saw Baxter running back to the warning track," Santana said. "When he made that catch I didn't even know it was in his glove. It was great, it was amazing. Unfortunately he had to come out of the game but at the same time it saved us big time and it was the key."
The no-hitter, however, would not come without controversy.
In the sixth, former-Met Carlos Beltran ripped a line drive, which clearly hit the third base-line chalk on replay. It was called foul by third base umpire Adrian Johnson.
"I'm the shortest guy on the field on the lowest part of the field and I couldn't see anything," Mets' manager Terry Collins said. "I was looking up and I couldn't tell if it was fair or foul."
Beltran ended up grounding out to short before Santana retired the side.
Santana (3-2) became the third pitcher this season to throw a no-hitter, joining Philip Humber of the White Sox and Jered Weaver of the Angels. Humber threw a perfect game April 25 against the Mariners, while Weaver no-hit the Twins May 2.
The left-handed Venezuelan missed the entire 2011 season due to shoulder surgery.
"I knew how the Mets never had a no hitter, and I never had one so this is very special," Santana said. "We worked very hard with all the things that we have been through and I have been through so this is very, very special and I know this means a lot to New York."
The last time the Cardinals were no-hit came June 29, 1990 when the Dodgers' Fernando Valenzuela accomplished the feat.
Lucas Duda homered and knocked in four while Kirk Nieuwenhuis had two hits and scored three times for New York, winners in five of its last seven.
Adam Wainwright (4-6) took the loss after giving up seven runs on six hits over 6 1/3 frames.
"I felt great tonight. I was locating and my stuff was pretty sharp. It was probably to oddest seven runs I've ever given up," said Wainwright.
The Mets pushed a pair across in the fourth to go up 2-0. Nieuwenhuis beat out an infield hit then moved to third on a Wright double. Duda's sacrifice fly scored Nieuwenhuis and moved David Wright to third. Daniel Murphy followed with a triple to score Wright.
New York added three more in the sixth to go ahead 5-0 when Duda roped a three-run homer to right. Nieuwenhuis singled and Wright walked to set the table for Duda's eighth homer of the year.
The Mets were able to add three in the seventh to go up 8-0. With the bases loaded, Wright drew a walk that plated Omar Quintanilla and Murphy followed with a single to score Andres Torres and Nieuwenhuis.
New York activated catcher Josh Thole from the 15-day disabled list Friday and optioned catcher Rob Johnson to Triple-A Buffalo...It was Beltran's first visit back to Citi Field since he was dealt to the San Francisco Giants last season...Beltran is one stolen base shy of becoming the eighth member of the 300 homer 300 stolen base club. He played center field for the first time since 2010.