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3/13/1979 (37 y, 11 m, 12 d)
1999 Rule 5 Draft - Round: 1, Pick: 2, Overall: 2, Team: Florida Marlins
$0.2M / 1 Years (2015)
Santana has left the Blue Jays and has halted his 2015 comeback, Toronto's announcer Mike Wilner reports. (6/27/2015)
The Aging, Youthful Blue Jays Rotation
Mike Petriello (FanGraphs)
Johan Santana & Jerry Sands: Deep League Waiver Wi»
Mike Podhorzer (RotoGraphs)
Bidding Farewell to Johan Santana
Paul Swydan (FanGraphs)
Johan Santana's Towel Inanimately Exasperated by A»
Robert J. Baumann (NotGraphs)
New York Mets Rotation: Depth Chart Discussions
Brett Talley (RotoGraphs)
(Click Year to Expand /
Year in Review:
After a triumphant finish to 2008, Santana started 2009 in much the same manner. Through his first 10 starts he was 7-2 with a 1.77 ERA. Santana also had 86 strikeouts and 20 walks in 66 innings with only five home runs allowed in that stretch. In short, he was fantastic. But his final 15 games were another matter entirely. Santana finished the year with a 6-7 record and a 4.02 ERA. In his final two starts, he allowed seven earned runs in 13.2 innings pitched before finally admitting he was pitching with an injury. In September, Santana had surgery to remove bone fragments from his left elbow. The most important thing was that he did not require Tommy John surgery, which would have kept him out of most, if not all, of 2010. The surgery was a success and the Mets’ ace is supposed to be ready for the start of spring training.
The Year Ahead:
Overall, Santana’s numbers paint the picture of a pitcher in decline. His K/9 of 7.88 was his lowest since 2001, while his HR/9 of 1.08 marked just the second time in eight years as a starter that it topped one. Additionally, his GB rate dropped to 35.7% and his FB rate rose to 47.5%, giving him a 0.75 GB/FB mark – tied for the fourth-worst mark in the majors among qualified starters. Only a better-than-average HR/FB rate of 8.6% kept Santana’s numbers from being even worse last year. For the past five seasons, Santana has been one of the first pitchers selected in fantasy, a streak likely to end this year. While no longer a choice for first pitcher off the board, smart fantasy owners will keep him high on their lists. Remember his first 10 starts last year for an indication of what a healthy Santana can still do. (Brian Joura)
In the Fan Projection ballots, those who submitted projections for Santana in 2011 and did not classify themselves as Mets fans estimated that he would pitch 157 innings this year - those who identified themselves with Mr. Met only had him down for 106 innings. In this case, I’d suggest going with the home town crowd, who likely have a better feel for what his recovery timeline looks like. We know Santana won’t be healthy to start the year, but if Mets fans are to be believed, he’s not likely to arrive until the second half of the season. No matter how optimistic you are about his chances for recovery, you’re only going to get 15-20 starts out of him, and that’s if there aren’t any setbacks. Given that Santana’s strikeout rate has dropped dramatically the last three years, what he can provide even when healthy is still an open question. There’s a lot of risk here and less upside than his name value might suggest. (Dave Cameron)
The Quick Opinion:
If you've got a roster spot to waste for three months, he could be a decent guy to stash, but don't expect to get the Johan of old when he does come back.
Old Johan Santana, he ain't what he used to be. Since 2007, he's seen his swinging strike rate decline every year, down from excellent to slightly above average, and his strikeout rate has dived with it. He still showed excellent control and somehow still managed to give up fewer home runs per fly ball than the league (9.1% career) ... until a shoulder capsule injury felled him for 2011. That's the same injury that robbed Chien-Ming Wang of much of his velocity and effectiveness, so be vary wary of spending on Santana, especially with the Mets moving the fences in. On the other hand, Santana is falling off a better peak than Wang, he's now had a full year to recover, and there will be more than a few good spot starts on his schedule. He could still round out the back end of your fantasy rotation, particularly if you are in a deep league or have multiple DL slots. Don't completely forget about Johan, yet. (Eno Sarris)
The Quick Opinion:
Already in a full-on decline that started in about 2007, Santana went down with a shoulder capsule injury that robbed him of 2011 completely. Projecting him -- or depending on him -- for 2012 is an iffy proposition, but at some point (late) he should be interesting in most drafts.
First the bad. Johan Santana only managed 117 innings, even after he took the entire 2011 season off. He also walked three batters per nine for the second-worst walk rate of his career. The second-worst ground-ball rate of his career, coupled with the second-worst home-run-per-fly-ball percentage, meant the second-most home runs per game for the Mets' 34-year-old starter. Since the ground-ball rate had been slipping for a while, and this was all paired with the worst velocity of his career, it's easy to write him off in 2013. The problem is that his changeup and slider are still great at what they do. He still got above-average swinging strikes on his arsenal. His control was still above-average. These are the things that can help an older starter with reduced gas remain relevant. Given the league he pitches in, and the offspeed stuff he still shows, Santana could easily put up a sub-four ERA with decent strikeout-per-inning totals and a good WHIP, even if he won't threaten 200 innings. (
The Quick Opinion:
Coming off the best season ever by a starter who's had anterior shoulder capsule surgery, you might think there should be some optimism this offseason surrounding the former ace in Queens. Johan Santana deserves a look late in your drafts anyway, because the good (relatively) outweighed the bad in 2012.
We’d love for Johan Santana to make a triumphant return in 2014, 20 months after he last pitched in the majors and nearly four years since he was last an ace. He’s now torn the anterior capsule of his left shoulder multiple times, however, and he was hardly vintage Santana when he last pitched. In 2012, he still struck batters out but no longer had precision control (it remained good, just not otherworldly), while batters were suddenly able to take advantage of his high fly ball rate. He’s going to find a home, perhaps in New York with the Yankees or in Minnesota with the Twins; maybe you can afford $1 late in auctions for old time’s sake and as a speculative play, but temper expectations for a guy who will be 35 when the season begins and has thrown 117 innings in the past three years. Nobody has ever returned from two surgeries on the same capsule. (
The Quick Opinion:
Johan Santana might get a minor league deal for spring training, and it'll be fun to root for him to make a successful return. Temper expectations, however, as he'll be 35 and has thrown just 117 innings in the past three years.
To say the least, it’s been a difficult few years for the two-time Cy Young winner, who has now missed three full seasons since 2010. As you may recall, Santana, who turns 36 in March, tore the anterior capsule in his left shoulder in 2010, made two disabled list trips with back and ankle problems in 2012 and tore the shoulder capsule again in early 2013. Most recently, a comeback bid with the Baltimore Orioles ended in June when Santana ruptured an Achilles tendon. At the time, reports from extended spring training
that Santana was able to reach the high 80s with his fastball, and his agent was quoted in November as saying the southpaw was
on coming back to the majors. Santana’s famous changeup and veteran savvy could make him an interesting player to keep an eye on as he
pitches in Venezuela
in early 2015, but until he snags a major league contract, there’s little reason to invest even a late-round pick in him on draft day. Especially since his Venezuelan team ordered an MRI for him -- clean -- and kept him out of their final series of the year. If he's never healthy again, at least the Mets and Twins fans will remember him and his unhittable changeup fondly. (
Karl de Vries
The Quick Opinion:
Santana’s progress is worth monitoring, but he needs to prove he’s healthy before having any fantasy value.
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Updated: Friday, February 24, 2017 3:33 AM ET
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