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Believe It!!!

Last night was supposed to be just an ordinary night at Citi Field in Queens.  The New York Mets were set to open a four game series against the St. Louis Cardinals.  The biggest story of the game was the imminent return of former Met Carlos Beltran, who signed with the Cardinals in the off-season. That story took a backseat to history.  On this night all eyes were on Johan Santana, as he became the first Mets pitcher to throw a no-hitter in franchise history.

Johan Santana did not have his best stuff tonight but battled like the warrior he is.  He got so much needed run support from his offense as they tacked on 8 runs for the game. Most notable is the 3-run homerun by Lucas Duda, who now has 3 homeruns in two games.  There was a questionable call in the sixth inning when Carlos Beltran hit a fair ball that was called foul by third base umpire Adrian Johnson.  The ball appeared to hit the chalk line, which would make it a fair ball but the call would stay foul.  As the game went on to the seventh inning you could feel that the fans in the stadium knew what was going on.  After Yadier Molina was robbed of a hit by outfielder Mike Baxter on a sensational catch running into the wall, the tension grew and the fans got louder.  By the eighth inning Santana was over 100 pitches but Terry Collins knew that he could not take him out.  Santana became the first Mets pitcher to take a no-hitter to the ninth inning since Tom Seaver did it.  After getting Matt Holliday and Allen Craig to pop up for the first two outs, it was down to David Freese.  Johan got Freese to strike out on a 3-2 pitch and the rest is history.

After 50 years and 8,020 games, Mets fans witnessed something that can only be described as “Simply Amazin.'”  A lot of fans thought that this night would never happen and some still held on to that thought until the last out was recorded.  After that final strike was sealed the Mets fans got their first Citi Field moment and cheered at the top of their lungs.  It was a magical night that Mets fans will remember for the rest of their lives.  After all the doom and gloom of the last few years, Johan and the Mets have put together a great start that nobody thought would happen. The Mets have shown heart, grit and the ability to come back when everything looks like it’s about to fall apart.

This was all capped by Johan Santana’s brilliant and gutty performance. He is a great leader for this team and after the game he told his teammates to “believe it,” which can turn out to be the Mets battle cry for the season.  At the end of the day, Johan Santana will be one of the most beloved Mets in franchise history and a legend in the fans’ eyes. Congratulations to Johan Santana!!!

Anthony Rivera: Pure Sports NY

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