This week has a few interesting names. It includes two pitchers in the same trade that threw a no-hitter, a twelve player deal that turns into a three player trade and a superstar hitter finding a home on the West Coast. Without further ado, here is this week’s installment of Mets history.
January 28, 2009- Aaron Heilman is traded twice in the same off season. Just a few weeks prior, the Mets traded the former #1 draft pick to the Seattle Mariners in a three-team, twelve player deal that netted the Mets J.J. Putz, Jeremy Reed and Sean Green. That trade occurred on December 11, 2008 and on this date, he was moved again. This time from the Mariners to the Chicago Cubs for Ronny Cedeno and Garrett Olson. Heilman posted a 4.24 ERA in 305 games and six seasons in Queens.
January 29, 2006- Arguably the greatest hitting catcher in MLB history, Mike Piazza is on the decline. His health has become a question mark for being able to start behind the plate. The Mets, among other teams, are leery to sign him. On this date, he joins the San Diego Padres to the tune of a one year, $2 Million deal. That season, he would defy the odds and the experts by catching 99 of his 126 games while hitting 22 home runs to go with a .283 AVG.
In his eight season with the Mets, he belted 220 home runs and boasted a .296 AVG. He would retire after the 2007 season with the Oakland A’s. Currently, even with a total of 427 home runs, 1335 RBI and a career .308 AVG in 16 MLB seasons, he is still waiting on a call from Cooperstown.
January 29, 2008- After a September collapse for the ages, the Mets make a deal to ensure another would not happen. In a monster transaction that fans, and writers alike, never thought would get done, the Mets acquired Johan Santana from the Minnesota Twins for four players: Phillip Humber, Kevin Mulvey, Deolis Guerra and Carlos Gomez. The deal is contingent, at the time, on Santana and the Mets coming to terms on a new contract. He would sign a six year, $137.5 Million deal on February 2, 2008.
That trade includes two pitchers that would eventually throw a no-hitter. Phillip Humber threw one for the Chicago White Sox last April and Santana finally broke the drought and delivered that first historic Mets no-hitter on June 1. Santana is returning from another injury this season and has high hopes for his chances to bounce back in his final season of his current Mets deal. When healthy, Santana has posted a 3.18 ERA, 607 K’s and a 46-34 record in 109 starts as a Mets ace.
January 30, 2009- The New York Mets and John Maine avoid arbitration by agreeing to a one year, $2.6 Million deal. Maine missed the final five weeks of that season and posted a 4.43 ERA with an unimpressive 7-6 record. He would pitch just nine games the next season and has not pitched in the Majors since 2010. In five years with the Mets, he posted a 4.17 ERA, 467 K’s and a 39-32 record in 97 games.