For decades, those prayers were never answered for the Mets. It took them until their 51st season, in 2012, to get their first no-hitter — by Johan Santana, also on a Friday at Citi Field. Santana threw 134 pitches, including one that was chipped by Carlos Beltran of the St. Louis Cardinals. It landed in fair territory but was called a foul, preserving the Santana gem.
After so many near misses — including two broken ninth-inning Tom Seaver offers — the Mets were likely due for a cosmic break. But the postscript was sobering for Santana, who made just 10 more starts in the majors, with an 8.27 ERA, before shoulder problems ended his career.
The Mets are taking no chances with Megill, who has made 23 major league starts and is yet to throw 100 pitches. They had to use Rodríguez and Lugo, manager Buck Showalter said, because neither had pitched in a while. Those pitchers did their job, and Smith and Díaz were nothing short of overwhelming, whipping up seven of the eight batters they faced.
It’s far too early to say, with certainty, that things are finally breaking the Mets’ way. But the team has played 9,507 games in its history and Friday’s game was only the second without a hit. Imperfect as it is, the feat is something players, fans – and streamers turning 64 – will remember when they grow old, losing their hair, many years from now.