Before Wednesday, if someone asked you which Johan Santana would be the first to throw a no-hitter in a big league game, chances are you’d have said “Duh, the one on the Mets... Wait, there’s another one?”
Well, you’d have been wrong.
Johan “Ervin” Santana* became the third pitcher to toss a no-hitter in 2011 after the 28-year-old righty struck out 10 to lead the Los Angeles Angels to a 3-1 victory in Cleveland.
Santana allowed a run in the first inning when Eric Carrera reached on an error and scored on a wild pitch but allowed only one baserunner — on his only walk of the afternoon — the rest of the way. The no-hitter is the first in 27 years for the traveling band of Angels.
Perhaps Santana was channeling Edwin Jackson — the former Chicago White Sox pitcher who was dealt to St. Louis during Santana’s no-no. Jackson pitched one of the ugliest no-hitters in history last June when he walked eight hitters and threw 149 pitches in a 1-0 win.
On Wednesday Santana needed only 95 pitches — 68 of which he threw for strikes — to get through the Indians’ floundering lineup.
*Born Johan Ramon Santana, Ervin changed his name in 2003 to avoid being confused with then-ace Johan Santana. It’s too bad you didn’t make a first-one-to-throw-a-no-no-gets-to-keep-the-name bet with the elder Santana