Tag Archives: mets

#29, the New York Mets

The NoNoHitters 30We continue our NoNoHitters 30 countdown today with the team that took more than a half century to finally get one, the New York Mets. The 8,019-game streak began on April 11, 1962, when the St. Louis Cardinals’ Julian Javier singled to left off Mets starter Roger Craig during the Mets franchise’s first major league game. It ended on June 1, 2012, in the team’s 51st season in the National League, when Johan Santana scattered five walks and struck out eight during the 8-0 no-hit victory over the St. Louis Cardinals.

A Mets pitcher never hurled a no-hitter before Johan?

That’s correct. A pitcher on the mound for the New York Mets never threw a no-no before 2012.

Really? What about Ryan, Seaver and guys like that?

Yes, Nolan Ryan pitched seven no-hitters during his Hall of Fame career, but they all came after he was traded by the Mets. And Tom Seaver finally got his sole no-hitter as a Cincinnati Red during his first season away from the Mets. In fact, seven former Mets pitched no-hitters after leaving New York. Mike Scott (Houston Astros), Dwight Gooden (New York Yankees) David Cone (Yankees), Hideo Nomo (Boston Red Sox) and Philip Humber (Chicago White Sox) round out the list. Click here for more details.

Were there also Mets pitchers who threw no-hitters prior to joining the Mets?

Yep. Don Cardwell (Chicago Cubs), Warren Spahn (Milwaukee Braves), Dean Chance (Minnesota Twins), Dock Ellis (Pittsburgh Pirates, while tripping on acid), John Candelaria (Pittsburgh Pirates), Bret Saberhagen (Kansas City Royals), Al Leiter (Florida Marlins), Scott Erickson (Minnesota Twins), Kenny Rogers (Texas Rangers) and Hideo Nomo (Los Angeles Dodgers) all did it. Note that Nomo is the only pitcher to hurl no-nos before and after his stint with the Mets. Click here for more details on this group’s no-hitters.

There must be pitchers that have no-hit the Mets, right?

You are correct. Six pitchers have thrown no-hitters against the Mets during their years of existence. This group includes Sandy Koufax, Jim Bunning, Bob Moose, Bill Stoneman, Ed Halicki and Darryl Kile.

Click here for more details on these games.

Was the Mets’ no-hitter drought the longest in Major League Baseball history

No. The Mets streak lasted 50+ seasons.No Hitters 8945 The Philadelphia Phillies were void of a no-hitter for 58 years, 1 month, 18 days between 1906 and 1964. The 8,945-game-long streak began on May 3, 1906, one game after Phillies’ southpaw Johnny Lush threw a 6-0 no-hitter against the Brooklyn Superbas. It ended on June 21, 1964, when Jim Bunning threw a 6-0 perfect game against the Mets during a Father’s Day doubleheader at Shea.

So are the Mets really cursed? How did that happen?

Well it’s no surprise that the Mets didn’t throw a no-hitter through most of the 1960s as they simply weren’t that good of a team. But with Ryan, Seaver, Jerry Koosman and Jon Matlack on the roster, the Mets surely had enough talent on the roster from the late 1960s to the mid 1970s to get it done. Some trace the curse back to Dec. 10, 1971, when the Mets traded Nolan Ryan along with pitcher Don Rose, catcher Francisco Estrada and outfielder Leroy Stanton to the California Angels for infielder Jim Fregosi. Ryan went on to throw seven no-nos and the Mets remained without until 2012.

I’m pretty sure the Mets had some one-hitters, right?

Yes, 38 to date, including two taken into the ninth inning by Tom Seaver. Most recently, Matt Harvey and Bobby Parnell one-hit the Chicago White Sox over 10 innings on May 7, 2013. See the full list here.

No-hitters thrown by franchise

1 New York Mets
0 San Diego Padres

The forgotten Subway Series near no-no

willets shea signThere have been six Subway Series no-nos over New York’s baseball history, with the Brooklyn Dodgers no-hitting the New York Giants three times, the Giants topping Brooklyn twice and the New York Yankees’ Don Larsen throwing a perfect game against the Dodgers in the 1956 World Series.

And then there’s the "Cookie Game" in Game 4 of the 1947 World Series, when the New York Yankees’ Bill Bevens threw 8 2/3 innings of no-hit ball before Cookie Lavagetto lined a double off the right field wall to kill the no-no and drive home two runs for the Dodgers win.

But on Sept. 9, 1971, the New York Mets nearly no-hit the New York Yankees in the annual Mayor’s Trophy Game exhibition. (For those who don’t remember the pre-interleague play tradition, the Mayor’s Trophy Game was a once-a-year contest between New York’s AL and NL teams to benefit the city’s sandlot baseball program.)

In front of a Shea Stadium crowd of 48,872, the Mets’ Jim McAndrew and Nolan Ryan no-hit the Yankees for seven innings as the Mets nursed an early 1-0 lead. Ron Taylor took the ball for the eighth and got the first two outs before Frank Baker singled to left for the game’s first hit. The Yankees wound up winning 2-1 in the ninth.

Here are the true Subway Series no-nos.

1 Tom Lovett
  Brooklyn Grooms (NL)
  Monday, June 22, 1891
Brooklyn Grooms 4, New York Giants 0
Eastern Park (Brooklyn)
2 Amos Rusie
  New York Giants (NL)
  Friday, July 31, 1891
New York Giants 6, Brooklyn Grooms 0
Polo Grounds (New York)
3 Richard "Rube" Marquard
  New York Giants (NL)
  Thursday, April 15, 1915
New York Giants 2, Brooklyn Robins 0
Polo Grounds (New York)
4 Rex Barney
  Brooklyn Dodgers (NL)
  Thursday, September 9, 1948
Brooklyn Dodgers 2, New York Giants 0
Polo Grounds (New York)
5 Carl Erskine
  Brooklyn Dodgers (NL)
  Saturday, May 12, 1956
Brooklyn Dodgers 3, New York Giants 0
Ebbets Field (Brooklyn)
(His second of two no-hitters)
6 Don Larsen
  New York Yankees (WS Game 5)
  Monday, October 8, 1956
New York Yankees 2, Brooklyn Dodgers 0
Yankee Stadium (New York)
(Perfect game in Game 5 of 1956 World Series)

Championship of the St. Pete Pelicans (a k a ex-Mets)

Steve Henderson St. Pete Pelicans cardHere’s a little Florida baseball trivia (and Mets trivia) ahead of players flocking to their upcoming Grapefruit League assignments.

Today is the 25th anniversary of the first Senior Professional Baseball Association championship, in which the St. Petersburg Pelicans topped the Palm Beach Tropics 12-4. Lamar Johnson, who last year served as the New York Mets’ hitting coach, hit a home run and drove in three RBIs in that contest.

The Pelicans actually featured a bevy of ex-Mets. Johnson (.372), Steve Henderson (.352) and Len Randle (.349) led St. Pete in offense, and Jon Matlack won 10 games for the club. The Pelicans roster also featured former Mets Dock Ellis (here’s our no-no tie-in), Joe Sambito, Butch Benton, Sergio Ferrer, Gary Rajsich, Jerry Martin and Pat Zachry. It’s like a who’s who of the low-profile ’80s era.

The season was essentially it for the 35-and-older league, as four teams dropped out ahead of the start of the second season. The SPBA folded shortly thereafter.

The Pelicans’ sharp looking dark red and gold uniforms did get a bit of redemption, though. The Tampa Bay Rays, void of many options for throwbacks, wore Pelicans jerseys in a game against the Houston Astros in 2008.

Mets sign man who would break no no-no curse, 7 years ago today

Seven years ago today, the New York Mets obtained the man who would eventually break the team’s 50-year streak of never having thrown a no-hitter.

John Santana
John Santana
The Mets dealt outfielder Carlos Gomez and minor-league pitchers Philip Humber, Kevin Mulvey and Deolis Guerra to the Minnesota Twins to obtain the two-time Cy Young Award winner from Venezuela. The trade was conditional on contract negotiations, and Santana and the Mets agreed to a six-year, $137.5 million contract on Feb. 1, 2008.

On June 1, 2012, Santana threw the Mets’ first no-hitter after 8,019 regular season games without one. Santana’s gem left the San Diego Padres as the only major league team without a no-no.

Santana throwing near 90 mph in Venezuelan league

Johan Santana, who needs no introduction on this site as he threw the first no-hitter in New York Mets history, is attempting a comeback in the Venezuelan Winter League. Santana, who has missed two seasons due to injury since his June 1, 2012 Mets accomplishment, is throwing hard in his home country for the Navegantes del Magallanes, with some of his fastballs reaching near 90 mph.

The New York Post is reporting that the New York Yankees were in attendance for Tuesday’s game and may be interested.

Here’s a clip of Santana in action:

44 years since the Kirby-Gomez incident

Just a day after Odrisamer Despaigne nearly allowed the San Diego Padres to finally shed the label of being the only major league team never to throw a no-hitter, nonohitters.com celebrates the anniversary of another significant event in that story.

San Diego could have exited the no-no club 44 years ago today, early in the franchise’s history. On July 21, 1970, the New York Mets were beating the Padres 1-0, but Padres starter Clay Kirby still had a no-hitter going through eight innings. With two outs in the bottom of the eighth, San Diego skipper Preston Gomez decided to pull Kirby for a pinch hitter, Cito Gaston.

“He was coming out, because I play to win,” Gomez told The AP after the game. “I knew he had a no-hitter going but we got to score some runs.”

Gaston struck out, reliever Jack Baldschun gave up a ninth-inning lead-off single to Bud Harrelson and the Mets rallied to pad their lead to 3-0, which would be the final score.

What if Gomez had allowed Kirby to bat? Would Kirby have reached base and started a rally that would have given them a 2-1 lead and an eventual no-no win? Would Kirby have struck out, yet kept the no-hitter alive through the top of the ninth to set up a ninth-inning Padres walk-off victory?

We’ll never know, and the club still doesn’t have no no-no.

Kirby acknowledged after the game that he was a little mad and a little surprised but said Gomez is the manager and it’s his call.

Gomez made the same move on Sept. 5, 1974, while managing the Houston Astros. Don Wilson was three outs from a no-hitter but the Astros trailed the Cincinnati Reds 3-0 and Gomez sent in pinch-hitter Tommy Helms in the bottom of the eighth inning.

Helms grounded out, Tony Perez killed the no-no with a ninth-inning single off Mike Cosgrove and the Reds wound up winning 2-1.

Padres’ Despaigne loses no-no in 8th

Odrisamer Despaigne took a San Diego Padres no-hitter through 7⅔ innings Sunday but lost it on a double by the New York Mets’ Daniel Murphy. The two-out hit marked the 7,264th game without a no-no for the San Diego Padres, the only team without one.

The 27-year-old Cuban-born right-hander then gave up a David Wright RBI single to lose the lead for a 1-1 tie before he was pulled by manager Bud Black after 123 pitches. The Padres won on a walk-off infield single in the bottom of the 9th.

The last team to exit the no no-no club was the Mets, of course, who in 2012 ended the league’s longest streak from birth at 8,019 games when Johan Santana no-hit the Cardinals.

42 years ago today, Leron Lee breaks up Seaver’s no-hitter in ninth

The Padres have been one-hit by the New York Mets three times, but none was as crushing to the Mets as Leron Lee’s 9th-inning no-no-killing single against eventual Hall of Famer Tom Seaver at Shea Stadium on July 4, 1972.

Seaver took a no-hitter into the ninth inning this day, although he walked two batters in the fourth and two batters in the eighth so the perfect game was off the board.

Seaver took the mound in the ninth and got Dave Roberts to ground out before Leron Lee lined a ball up the middle to end the no-no bid. He then got Nate Colbert to ground into a 6-4-3 double play to end the game for a 2-0 complete-game shutout, Seaver’s fourth career one-hitter.

Seaver struck out 11 batters, and the Mets scored their only runs with two outs in the third when Jim Fregosi and Ed Kranepool drew bases-loaded walks from the Padres’ Clay Kirby.

It was the Mets’ ninth one-hitter and it marked the team’s 1,692nd game without a no-hitter. On the other side, Kirby lost his no-hitter on Wayne Garrett’s first-inning single to move the Padres’ count to 556 games.

Padres left alone, two years ago today

johanTwo years ago today, on June 1, 2012, Johan Santana threw the first no-hitter in New York Mets history, anointing the San Diego Padres with new-found infamy as the team with the longest current drought. Santana’s gem ended the Mets’ streak at 8,019 games with no no-nos, dating back to the franchises first game in 1962.

The Padres have been at it since 1969.

The Mets streak lasted 50+ seasons, which is the longest a franchise has ever gone from its birth, but it’s not the longest no no-no streak. That record belongs to the Philadelphia Phillies, who were void of a no-hitter for 58 years, 1 month, 18 days between 1906 and 1964. The 8,945-game-long streak began on May 3, 1906, one game after Phillies’ southpaw Johnny Lush threw a 6-0 no-hitter against the Brooklyn Superbas. It ended on June 21, 1964, when Jim Bunning threw a 6-0 perfect game against the Mets during a Father’s Day doubleheader at Shea Stadium in New York.

Happy 70th Cito Gaston

A happy 70th birthday to former Padres outfielder Cito Gaston, who in 1970 was put in to pinch hit for Clay Kirby by manager Preston Gomez despite Kirby having a no-hitter through eight innings.

San Diego was down 1-0 to the New York Mets at the time. Gaston struck out, reliever Jack Baldschun gave up a ninth-inning lead-off single to Bud Harrelson and the Mets rallied to pad their lead to 3-0, which would be the final score.

Gomez’s decision still haunts the Padres more than 43 years later as the team is still void of a no-no.