Mets Johan Santana to Start Opening Day 2012

Johan Santana
Johan Santana (Photo credit: Keith Allison)

Mets manager Terry Collins announced the 2012 rotation this morning. I have to say that I’m happily surprised that Johan Santana will start opening day on Thursday at Citi Field. I know there are no expectations for this team. But having Santana out there on opening day is huge.

Santana will be followed in the rotation by R.A. Dickey, Jon Niese, Mike Pelfrey, and Dillon Gee.

I’m still not expecting much this season but Santana pitching every five days makes this team much more interesting to me. Does this news give you any hope for the 2012 season?

Mets Zack Wheeler To Binghamton

Binghamton Mets
Binghamton Mets (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Top pitching prospect Zack Wheeler tweeted this morning that he’s going to begin the 2012 season with the Binghamton Mets. Of course, he was the prospect acquired from the Giants last year in the Carlos Beltran trade.

He spent last season with the St. Lucie Mets after coming over from San Jose. Between both stops, he was 9-7 with a 3.52 ERA in 115 innings of work over 22 starts. Expect his innings to increase this season on his way to building strength to pitch a completed big league season.

If he’s successful at Binghamton we may see Wheeler in Flushing by September.

Video: Mets Johan Santana on Fifth 2012 Spring Start

Johan Santana
Johan Santana (Photo credit: Keith Allison)

Johan Santana didn’t start well for the Mets yesterday but his line didn’t end up looking too bad. He started the game by walking three of the first four batters he faced and giving up a hit. But he regained control and ended up pitching 5 complete innings and giving up 2 runs. More importantly, he threw 88 pitches.

Yesterday was Santana’s fifth start of the spring and he’s been throwing regular bullpen sessions in between. And there haven’t been any reports of pain or stiffness in his surgically repaired left shoulder.

Barring a setback, I would think that Santana will on the Mets opening day roster next week. He certainly appears ready for game action if he’s been stretched out to 88 pitches. Maybe the Mets will want to be extra careful and have him make a start or two at Buffalo. But the cold weather in April in Buffalo might not be the best place for him to be.

Video: Mets 2012 Spring Training Thoughts

PORT ST. LUCIE, FL - FEBRUARY 17:  Manager Ter...
Image by Getty Images via @daylife

I’m glad to get the 2012 spring training season going with the first video of the year with Kerel Cooper of On The Black. In this video we start by touching on our feeling about the Mets moves during the offseason. There weren’t that many acquisitions and one big loss of Jose Reyes to talk about.

We also talk about the changes to the dimensions at Citi Field. The fences came in a bit this year and we discuss the impact that will have on home games.

Check out the video below for the full details and add your comments below.

Mets Ike Davis and Valley Fever

PORT ST. LUCIE, FL - FEBRUARY 24:  Ike Davis #...
Image by Getty Images via @daylife

There have been a lot of reports from Port St. Lucie since yesterday about Ike Davis having Valley Fever. It’s the same condition that held Conor Jackson to playing in only 30 games with the D-Backs in 2009. Although it’s not known if Davis definitely has Valley Fever, he has some of the symptoms and had an abnormal lung x-ray about 10 days ago that led the Mets to send Davis to see a specialist.

The Mets seem to be backtracking on their previous announcement that Davis was ready for spring training without restrictions. They issued another statement yesterday to the media:

Ike Davis underwent a routine physical exam after his arrival in PSL. The exam included an abnormal chest X-ray. Following additional tests here and in NYC, pulmonary and infectious disease specialists have concluded that Ike likely has Valley Fever, which is expected to resolve itself over time. Ike is not contagious, is not taking any medication for his condition and does not currently exhibit any of the outward symptoms associated with Valley Fever. However, Ike has been instructed to avoid extreme fatigue. No additional tests or examinations are pending, but Ike will have a follow up exam when the team returns to NYC in early April. Continue reading “Mets Ike Davis and Valley Fever”

Video: Johan Santana On Facing Live Hitters

Johan Santana
Johan Santana (Photo credit: Keith Allison)

Yesterday Mets ace Johan Santana faced live hitters in batting practice for the first time this spring. He pitched two simulated innings and looked pretty good. Several of the hitters remarked that his stuff looked excellent. The plan from here is for Santana to start on Tuesday against Carlos Beltran’s Cardinals and continue to monitor how he’s doing to see how he feels.

If he continues to progress and feel good on the day after he pitches, it would be great to see him start building strength and stamina in his arm with an eye towards pitching early in the regular season.

I continue to believe that the Mets season is highly dependent on how quickly Santana can return from shoulder surgery. I don’t think they’re a playoff team even with Santana. But the season could become a complete disaster without him including the possibility of 100 losses which we haven’t seen here since ’93.