- Associated Press - Saturday, June 2, 2012

NEW YORK — Mike Baxter sacrificed his body for Johan Santana’s no-hitter. Ramon Ramirez got hurt before he could even celebrate it.

The first no-hitter in New York Mets history was costly: Baxter and Ramirez are headed to the disabled list, both injured on a memorable night at Citi Field. And manager Terry Collins remains concerned about Santana after the left-hander threw a career-high 134 pitches.

Baxter is expected to miss about six weeks after crashing into the left-field fence while making an outstanding catch to preserve Santana’s gem Friday night against St. Louis. Ramirez strained his right hamstring during the postgame celebration.

When it comes to the Mets, it seems, even big success comes with plenty of pain.

The team plans to place Baxter and Ramirez on the 15-day disabled list Sunday and bring in a couple of reinforcements.

The Mets said Saturday that Baxter displaced the joint between his right collarbone and sternum and tore rib cartilage on his right side when he slammed into the outfield fence to rob Yadier Molina of extra bases in the seventh inning. Baxter actually hit the padded wall with his left shoulder, and stayed down on the warning track because it went numb.

“It’s almost like a dislocation,” Collins said. “It’s not a fracture. The doctor said it could take up to six weeks to heal.”

Baxter described the timetable for his return as similar to that of Jason Bay, who has a broken rib and has been out since April 24. The left fielder is close to returning, perhaps in the coming week.

“We’ve got to take our time and it’ll heal itself,” Baxter said.

Ramirez was injured running onto the field with teammates to mob Santana after he finished the first no-hitter in the Mets‘ 51-season history.

“He was just running in,” Collins said. “He didn’t even get to the pile. He was running hard and all of a sudden his leg grabbed him.”

After all that, Santana came off the field after celebrating with his teammates and saw Collins waiting on the top step of the dugout. The two embraced and Santana said: “I told you to trust me.”

“I said, ‘Yeah you did,’” Collins said Saturday, still proud a day after Santana threw the first no-hitter in team history — a wait of 8,020 games.

Santana said his surgically repaired left shoulder felt fine even after all those pitches.

Collins said he was conflicted about leaving Santana in so long, but ultimately realized he was not going to deny the ace a chance at history. The former Astros and Angels skipper has only been with the Mets for two years, but he knew how much getting a no-hitter — finally, after all those seasons and excellent pitchers who have come and gone from Queens — would mean to the organization and its fans.

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