Johan Santana is Fixed
According to Dan Warthen — by way of Adam Rubin and other media outlets — Johan Santana had a very good bullpen session, during which he addressed and fixed an issue with his pitching motion.
From Rubin’s blog:
Pitching coach Dan Warthen feels Johan Santana adequately addressed the mechanical flaw in his delivery during a between-starts bullpen session Wednesday at Camden Yards. To get Santana’s fastball to stop cutting unintentionally, they worked to get the ace’s left hand out of his glove quicker, so Santana’s arm acts less like a “catapult” during his motion.
From David Lennon:
“He was catapulting the ball instead of throwing it,” said Warthen, who demonstrated what he meant with a more overhand delivery. “He’s didn’t have that same deception he usually has.”
Neither Warthen nor Santana knows exactly why the Mets’ ace developed that subtle change, but they feel confident it was corrected today. Warthen said he could tell that Santana was throwing with more velocity and his location with the fastball was significantly better.
That is great news, assuming he can carry over the adjustment into a game — which is easier said than done.
And as MetsBlog pointed out, someone here at MetsToday had a theory about Johan’s pitching motion.
In case you forgot, after the Yankees series we stated this in “What’s Wrong with Johan Santana?”
Johan Santana’s velocity is down, as is his command. One thing I notice is his arm dragging behind slightly — it’s out of sync with his hips, and as a result the hips and legs are driving forward a hair too early, and therefore not helping to power the ball. The question is, why is his arm behind? Is it a timing issue, or is there something physically keeping him from firing his hand forward at its usual speed? For example, does he suffer from a mild shoulder injury?