As CBSSports.com's Jon Heyman reported, the Mets were surprised that Johan Santana showed up at camp in something less than optimal condition. Here's another surprise: Santana threw from a bullpen mound on Sunday (Adam Rubin, ESPN New York).
This spring, the veteran lefty, as Heyman noted, has been battling shoulder fatigue, which likely stems from the surgical procedure that he underwent last offseason. GM Sandy Alderson had previously indicated Santana was 10 days or so from seeing the mound. "What's spring training for?" Santana said after his surprise bullpen session (New York Post). "What's practice? To get you better. That's what I'm doing right now. That's what I'm here for, and that's what I'm going to do. That's what I'm working on."
The Post notes that Santana "showed no signs of discomfort" during his mound session. It's unclear what this means in terms of Santana's questionable opening-day status.
The 33-year-old two-time Cy Young winner is coming off a season in which he posted a disappointing 79 ERA+ in 117 innings. The Mets will almost certainly opt for the $5.5 million buyout that they have on Santana's $25 million 2014 option, which means he'll be a free agent at season's end.
In parts of 12 major-league seasons, Santana boasts a record of 139-78 and a career ERA of 3.20. He's also 12 strikeouts shy of 2,000.
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