It came down earlier this evening that the Mets’ Johan Santana will undergo his second surgery in the past two and a half years on a torn anterior capsule in his left shoulder. The last time that Santana went through the surgery, it took 19 months for him to pitch again, so a similar, if not longer, recovery time is likely.
This is obviously a huge hit to the Mets’ rotation for the 2013 season, as the probable starting pitchers include Jonathan Niese, Dillon Gee, Matt Harvey, and Jeremy Hefner, with the banged-up Sean Marcum rounding out the group. Eventually, the Mets hope to get some innings from Zack Wheeler, but everything seems to be in flux right now.
As for Santana….this will end up amounting to a total of 21 starts over the past three MLB seasons with an ERA of 4.85 with some of the worst peripheral statistics in his entire career, including an unsightly 1.33 WHIP and the second-highest home run rate ever. He just turned 34, and there is a very real chance that he will not throw another major league pitch until sometime in the middle of his age-36 season.
The Mets owe Santana $25.5 million this year, and will almost certainly exercise the $5.5 million buyout on Santana’s contract for the 2014 season.