After undergoing a second surgery on the anterior capsule in his left shoulder and spending roughly six months rehabbing, Johan Santana has resumed throwing. Tweeted Santana a few days ago:
Very happy to move to the next phase of my rehab! Throwing!!!! So far, so good!!!
— El Gocho believe it! (@johansantana) October 4, 2013
Santana, who will be 35 by the time opening day rolls around, will almost certainly be bought out of his contract by the Mets for $5.5 million between now and December.
After returning from the first surgery he had on his shoulder, Santana tossed the first no-hitter in Mets history in June of 2012. Soon after, Santana was shut down for the season with shoulder fatigue. However, he was effective in the first few starts after his no-hitter – disproving the built in narrative that the no-hitter (and 134 pitches thrown that night) led to his injury.
Last season, Santana fell behind during spring training, and was eventually shut down. Prior to the start of the season, it was discovered that he had re-injured the anterior capsule in his shoulder, and would need to undergo a second surgery.
There’s a chance that Santana will be re-signed by the Mets for 2014, but I’d place much higher odds on him landing elsewhere. Not because he doesn’t want to return, but due to the Mets’ current circumstances.
With Matt Harvey absent for most, if not all of next season, the Mets will likely be adding one high upside starter from outside the organization, and one cheaper option who can compete with Jenrry Mejia and the pitching prospects who are on the cusp (and perhaps report to Triple-A Las Vegas if they’re beaten out for the job). For that last rotation spot, the Mets should be seeking someone whose health isn’t in question.
It would be tremendous to see Santana round back into form with the Mets, and finish what he started here, but the odds seem long.