Last week I wrote about how the Mets began a critical stretch of games with a big win against the Phillies, even though Johan’s best work was done with his bat. Well, since then, the Mets lost two games against the Phils they should have won, and then they lost the series opener against the Yankees in heartbreaking fashion, allowing the cross-town rivals to take 2 of 3 instead of the other way around. And Johan had a game on the mound far worse than that Phillies game, on Sunday against the Yanks.
So while Mets fan talk has been centered around whether or not they can keep pace with the Phillies or with whoever is leading the wild card race (the Cardinals right now), or our rapidly growing disabled list, or possible trade rumors, I’d like to offer a diversion: What will happen first in Mets’ history—a player leading the league in batting for a single season, or one of our pitchers throwing a no-hitter?
Neither has happened yet, but the idea for this column crossed my mind when an announcer brought up the fact that third baseman David Wright is currently the National League’s leading hitter (.365 as of today), and that no Mets’ player has ever led the league in batting for an entire season. And as we’re all painfully aware, we’ve only experienced no-hitters from the batting side. (I think as a kid I cried both when San Diego’s Leron Lee broke up one of Tom Seaver’s many no-hit bids, and when the Giants’ Ed Halicki no-hit the Mets).
I have to say that, for as freaky as it is that the Florida Marlins have four no-hitters in less than 17 seasons of existence, and the Mets have zero in almost 50 years, I think it will happen for a Mets pitcher before someone leads the league in batting. There now, I hope I didn’t curse it. Further, I see Johan Santana as the guy to take us fans to that uncharted promised land (yeah, I know, not after these last two outings, but he’s still Johan Freaking Santana). No offense to David Wright, but he’s a .314 career hitter who, despite his ridiculous lack of power (he’s on pace for ELEVEN homers), is having a career batting season. I hope he keeps it up, but I just don’t see him leading the league this year or any other season.
What do you all think?