Once the trade was agreed upon in principle, the Mets had two days to come to terms with Santana on a contract extension. With time running out on the deadline, the Mets and Twins were granted a two-hour extension by Major League Baseball. With literally just a handful of minutes remaining on the negotiating extension, Santana agreed to a six-year, $137.5 million dollar deal with the Mets. The deal — at the time — made Santana the highest paid pitcher in baseball history.
In his first season in a Mets uniform, Santana compiled his best season. In 34 starts, he compiled a 16-7 won-loss record, a National League best 2.53 ERA in 234.1 innings pitched and 208 strikeouts.
The highlight of Santana’s tenure with New York came on June 1, 2012 when he pitched the first no-hitter in franchise history, beating the St. Louis Cardinals, 8-0, at Citi Field.
The piece of history wasn’t without controversy when former Met Carlos Beltran hit a line drive over third base. Instant replay revealed the ball clipped the outer edge of the left field foul line and should have been ruled fair.
Santana threw 134 pitches to complete the no-hitter. While Santana did not regret the decision to stay in the game, Mets manager Terry Collins still does.
“You can’t say it was the right decision or the wrong decision,” said Santana. “Because you don’t know. No doctor ever told me, ‘Oh, if you didn’t throw so many pitches in this game or that game, your shoulder would not have been hurt again.’ Maybe if I would have gotten knocked out in the fourth inning, everything would have been different, or nothing would have been different.”
Collins replied, “I was very aware of what the wear and tear of that night could do to him, and basically, that worst-case scenario happened. To throw that amount of pitches with that much pressure and that much adrenaline going, it can beat you down. And it did.”
- New York Times: Johan Santana throws first no-hitter in Mets history
- NBC Sports: Faux-No? Johan Santana Makes History With Mets First No-Hitter Despite Questionable Call
- USA Today: Did Johan Santana’s 134-pitch no-hitter really ruin his MLB career?
- Sports Illustrated: Why Johan Santana’s no-hitter still haunts Terry Collins
- SABR: Johan Santana delivers Mets’ first no-hitter