Multiple reports Monday say the Orioles are close to signing former Met Johan Santana to a minor league deal.
One of those reports says the Orioles see Santana as a “potential lefty reliever.” It would be interesting to see how that would work out.
There was some talk during the winter that Sandy Alderson had some interest in bringing Santana back to the Mets, but it obviously never panned out. That’s probably a good idea; time to move on from Santana’s checkered Mets career.
The Mets had high hopes for Johan Santana when Omar Minaya traded four prospects for him and signed him to a six-year, $137.5 million contract following the 2007 collapse. The subsequent 2008 collapse was not Santana’s fault — he went 16-7 with a league leading 2:53 ERA and probably would have won the Cy Young Award had the bullpen not blown so many leads for him.
He pitched well in 2009 and 2010, but he ended each season with injury. The last one cost him all of 2011. Of course he pitched the epic no-hitter in 2012 before going down again and missing all of 2013.
Overall, Santana was 46-34 with a 3.18 ERA in 109 starts for the Mets. The Mets expected around 180 starts over the six years. They also probably expected him to pitch in the post season for them. Instead, he pitched in exactly zero post-season games for the Mets (the same number as Pedro Martinez, by the way).
Although Johan Santana’s Mets career has to be called a disappointment, he did bring the fans many thrills. We would all like to see him resurrect his career and finish with a bang, and not have to go out with his Mets whimper.