Decision On Shutting Down Santana Looms Today

An article by posted on August 20, 2012

Updated Post 8/20 9:00 AM

Terry Collins will meet with Sandy Alderson today to discuss whether or not struggling left-hander Johan Santana will be shutdown for the rest of the season.

According to Adam Rubin, neither Collins nor pitching coach Dan Warthen were prepared to guarantee that Santana proceeds with his scheduled start on Thursday.

Original Post 8/18 8:00 AM

The New York Mets may decide to shut Johan Santana down for the rest of the 2012 MLB season after another dismal pitching performance according to comments made by pitching coach Dan Warthen as reported by Adam Rubin of ESPN New York.

Said Warthen about a potential shutdown: “We’ll have to talk about that, and we’ll have to talk to Johan and see how the body feels, how the arm feels, how he feels mentally. I’m not going to discount anything. I’m not going to say one way or the other. We’ll all sit down and have a powwow, I would imagine as soon as we get home and see Sandy Alderson and make the discussion and then talk to Johan and see how the back is and everything else — see how sore he is.”

After last night’s poor outing, Santana became the first pitcher in franchise history to allow six or more earned runs in five straight starts.

“You know, my season has been a roller coaster, a lot of ups and downs. Good days. Bad days. But I’m very positive about everything, because I’m coming back from a major surgery, and I’ve been able to be out there every five games. Right now my shoulder is fine. I don’t have any issues with it. It’s just that it has been a long season for me.”

When asked about the possibility of cutting short his season, the Mets left-hander said the decision would be a joint one. “This is a decision, whatever it will be, it’s going to be together. I think it has to be in a way where we’ll talk together and see how we feel. Whatever they want to do, as long as it works out for everybody in the long term, I think it will be fine.”

Santana has seen his fortunes change drastically since his no-hitter. His ERA is 8.27 in 10 starts since that historic June 1st game.

So, a few days after announcing that the team would  go with a six man rotation for the remainder of this season, a new twist comes along.

Here’s the way I see it and ultimately the way I hope this shakes out after the Mets meeting of the minds.

  1. In light of the fact Johan Santana is still owed $31 million for next season, lets do the prudent thing and shut him down immediately. Spend the rest of this season and offseason ensuring that we bring him him back stronger and better in the Spring. Let him focus on extensive rehab and conditioning between now and then, with plenty of rest built in so he can regain the strength he has obviously lost.
  2. Even if last night was his final game of the season, that no-hitter and the thrilling three months he gave us in the first half of the season was worth every penny of his $25 million dollar salary. For three months the Mets held their own with the top teams in the league and they did it while competing in the best and toughest division in baseball. Santana had a lot to do with that.
  3. Bring up Jenrry Mejia from Triple-A Buffalo and get him into that rotation and lets see what we have in him. Continue the plans with the six man rotation so that both Harvey, Niese and Mejia don’t pile up too many innings on their young arms. Mejia was coming up on September 1 anyway, so just do it now instead, especially while he’s pitching fabulously since re-joining the Buffalo rotation,

That’s not a bad plan, right? And the best part is that we can evaluate Jeremy Hefner and Jenrry Mejia along the way, while giving Matt Harvey more MLB experience and toughening him up for his foray into the top of the Mets rotation next season.

The Mets waved the white flags on the 2012 season at the trade deadline. Nobody is fooling anyone here. So lets focus on 2013 now not three months from now. Spring Training just started for the Mets and now it’s time to see who wants a job in 2013 and who doesn’t. Game on…

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I'm a lifelong Mets fan who loves writing and talking about the Amazins' 24/7. From the Miracle in 1969 to the magic of 1986, and even the near misses in '73 and '00, I've experienced it all - the highs and the lows. I started Mets Merized Online in 2005 to feed my addiction and interact with other passionate Met fans like you. Follow me on Twitter @metsmerized.

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