In the top of the 7th inning on Friday, June 1st at Citi Field, New York Mets outfielder Mike Baxter made a phenomenal catch to save Johan Santana’s eventual no-hitter. After making the catch, Baxter went down and stayed down on the warning track, ball in glove, lying in agony. After leaving the game under his own power, it was feared that the Pride of Whitestone potentially suffered a left shoulder injury or even a concussion. After today’s 5-0 victory over the St. Louis Cardinals, manager Terry Collins announced to the media that Mike Baxter will be placed on the disabled list for approximately 6 weeks with a displaced collarbone and a rib cartilage injury.
Baxter has been one of the many pleasant surprises on this years Mets squad defensively and especially at the plate. Once an unknown bench player, Mike Baxter has become a fan favorite with his big pinch hits and now after last night, he has become a legend. Mike, batting .323 this season, grew up in Queens (thus the nickname the Pride of Whitestone) as a kid and was even a Mets fan. He knew the long history of the ball club and he admitted after the game that he was well aware that there had never been a no-hitter in a franchise that experience pitching royalty since it’s birth in 1962.
Mike Baxter sacrificed his body and potentially the future of his career for not only his pitcher or the rest of the team, but also for the fans. We have no way of knowing what kind of long-term impact this will have on Mike Baxter and for all we know, he may never be the same again when he does eventually return, but after last night there is one thing that we do know. Not only will the New York fans forever appreciate and remember the play he made on that magical June evening, but he has etched his name into Mets history.
Be sure to follow me on Twitter!