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Mets deny Johan Santana permission to pitch in WBC

By Mike Axisa | Baseball Writer
Santana will remain with the Mets this spring. (US Presswire)

Mets GM Sandy Alderson confirmed to reporters on Monday that the team has denied left-hander Johan Santana permission to pitch in the World Baseball Classic. They were able to do so because he finished last year on the disabled list.

Santana, who will turn 34 in March, hoped to pitch for Team Venezuela in the tournament, but the Classic would have had to insure the $31 million left on his contract to make that happen. Even if the Mets did grant him permission, it's unclear if the Classic would have allowed him to pitch.

Ankle and back problems ended Santana's season in mid-August. He missed all of 2011 due to shoulder surgery and went 6-9 with a 4.85 ERA in 21 starts last summer. Santana pitched in the 2006 WBC, but he sat out the 2009 event due to a knee injury.

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