And when he heard about it, Minaya almost didn't believe it.
"The only indication I had was when I got a text that it was the seventh inning and that there was a no-hitter," said Minaya, who was the general manager of the Mets from 2005-2010.
"I got so used to seeing a guy have one in the seventh or eighth inning and not get it done that I didn't think about it. But later I got a text that he [Santana] threw a no-hitter. It [text message] just looked ... different."
Minaya, in his first season with the Padres as senior vice president of baseball operations, said that he was proud of Santana and happy for the Mets' organization and their fans. The Mets and Padres were the only two Major League teams without a no-hitter until Santana blanked the Cardinals.
Minaya was the man responsible for trading for Santana on Feb. 2, 2008 when he sent four players to the Twins for the left-handed pitcher. Santana then signed a six-year deal worth $137.5 million.
Santana won 16 games for the Mets in 2008 but had a knee injury that season and arthroscopic surgery on his left elbow in 2009. In 2010, Santana had surgery to repair a torn anterior capsule in his left shoulder which caused him to miss all of last season.
"I'm happy for him, especially with how much hard work he's put in," Minaya said. "I'm happy for him, the organization and the fans. As someone who worked for the Mets, you're happy to see that."