The man? That sounds about right. Yesterday, he did it all. There had been tons of talk about Johan Santana and his lack of success. Coming into the game yesterday his stats showed him as a .500 pitcher. But in his past two starts he's shown exactly why he's more than that. Yesterday he finally got the run-support that gave him the elusive 6th win.
In the bottom of the 3rd inning Johan was batting with 2 outs and nobody on base. On SNY, Gary Cohen and Keith Hernandez were talking about Johan's hitting ability and Gary was sure he would hit a home run one day. Gary even went as far to say he could sneak a homer into the right field corner of Citi Field. A 12 pitch at-bat ensued. On the last pitch Johan proved Gary right. He pulled a fly ball to the right field corner and off the foul pole, a home run.
With one swing of his own bat Johan Santana had a 1-0 lead. That's all he would need as he pitched a complete game shutout. The strong hitting Reds were held to only 3 hits.
Johan proved to everybody that he was still the pitcher that dominated baseball for years. Two runners reached base in the 9th inning, bringing Jerry Manuel out to the mound. With Francisco Rodriguez warming up in the bullpen and the 3-0 lead bringing a save opportunity it looked like Johan's night was done. Not more than 15 seconds after he left the dugout, Jerry was back in the dugout and Johan was still on the mound, finishing what he started.
There had been talk of Johan tipping his pitches. There was none of that last night. There was talk of Johan losing his velocity. There was none of the that last night. There used to be talk of Johan losing control of his pitches. There was none of that last night.
Johan Santana is back, and that is very good news for the New York Mets.
Let's Go Mets!