NEW YORK (WFAN) — Just call him the one-hit wonder.
On the same night Giants starter Matt Cain twirled a perfect game, Mets starter R.A. Dickey was just two David Wright miscues from making his own mark on the record books.
Wright couldn’t handle a grounder from Tampa Bay Rays star B.J. Upton in the first inning Wednesday night, which was officially ruled a hit. Dickey then retired 22 straight batters before a Wright error in the ninth allowed the only other Rays base runner. Two Mike Nickeas passed balls later, and the starter’s scoreless streak was over at 32.2 innings
Dickey said he harbored no ill will toward Wright after the 9-1 win, though he did manage to throw a good-natured jab the third baseman’s way.
“I said, ‘You cost me a perfect game twice in one game,’ ” Dickey told WFAN’s Boomer Esiason and Craig Carton on Thursday. “He had some kind of remark back. But we always josh around with each other.
“But you know, that was a tough play all around. I mean, he tried to bare-hand that ball down the line, B.J. Upton’s pretty quick. So it’s OK, completely OK.”
LISTEN: Dickey with Boomer & Carton
The right-hander said he threw his signature knuckleball 94 percent of the time Wednesday night — and boy did he have it working. Dickey recorded a career-high 12 strikeouts and didn’t walk a single batter.
“Nickeas didn’t even have to put down a sign,” said Dickey. “I mean, he knew the knuckleball was coming every time.”
Johan Santana hurled the franchise’s first no-hitter in game No. 8,020. Now, 11 contests later, they’re looking for another one. Mets manager Terry Collins said he’d appeal to Major League Baseball for Upton’s hit to be overturned, which would give the team their second no-no in under two weeks.
But Dickey, who characterized the appeal as a “Hail Mary,” didn’t sound all too positive that he’d welcome the unlikely ruling.
“The thing about it is, I think the asterisk beside the no-hitter would get more attention than the actual no-hitter if it got overturned,” Dickey said. “And I don’t–”
Said Carton: “You don’t want it that way.”
“Yeah,” Dickey replied. “You know, you don’t, really.”
As for his contract, the veteran is “hopeful” that he’ll reach a long-term agreement with the Mets, who hold a $5 million club option for 2013.
“I do have a sense of loyalty to them, and a certain regard, because they really did give me an opportunity to reestablish my career,” said Dickey. “So, you know, if they’re interested in talking, my representatives and I will certainly be open to that, longer-term than just the option. But as of right now it’s kind of the last thing on my mind.”
So what is on his mind?
Oh, not much. Just his ongoing attempt to become the top pitcher in baseball. That’s all.
With an MLB-leading 10 wins under his belt, Dickey is certainly on the right track.
“You always hope that you can be the best at something,” he said. “Just because I’m a knuckleballer and I’m 37 doesn’t mean that I don’t desire to be the best pitcher in the big leagues — I do.”
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