Mets Forgot About Johan Santana’s Elbow

During the team’s conference call with the press today, Ben Shpigel asked Omar Minaya if Johan Santana’s elbow issue was related in any way to the discomfort he felt back in February. Minaya was stunned by the question — he had not remembered the elbow problem, stating that “spring training was a long time ago”. Later, Minaya said that the “spring training problem” had “more to do with Santana’s knee”.

Wow … and we wonder why the Mets’ medical issues have been such a problem this year. If the team can’t remember their $137.5M investment and ace pitcher had elbow issues, how can they possibly deal with the phyical problems of “lesser” players?

Now we understand why Jose Reyes played on a bad hammy, Carlos Beltran on a bad knee, and J.J. Putz with a bad elbow (among others) — the Mets simply “forgot” those players were injured!

Another strange quote by Minaya … after being asked why Santana wasn’t shut down earlier in the season — since he hasn’t thrown in between starts since June — Minaya’s response was:

“That’s why we’re shutting him down now. … After his last start is when he brought it up.”

Um …. huh?

In any case, Johan Santana was seen by Dr. David Altcheck, and the result of the examination is that Santana has bone chips in his elbow. He will have season-ending surgery to remove the chips.

There has been no confirmation one way or the other as to whether Santana had an MRI — only that he saw Dr. Altcheck. Strange, no?

Minaya also announced that Oliver Perez would be heading back to New York to have his knee examined. No word on whether Perez would also have his head examined, unfortunately.

Further, Minaya confirmed the Billy Wagner trade, and said that both Pat Misch and Nick Evans would be activated.

Finally, J.J. Putz will NOT pitch tonight in Brooklyn as scheduled. The Mets are going to “play it safe” with Putz and have him wait a little longer before throwing in a live game.

Joe Janish began MetsToday in 2005 to provide the unique perspective of a high-level player and coach -- he earned NCAA D-1 All-American honors as a catcher and coached several players who went on to play pro ball. As a result his posts often include mechanical evaluations, scout-like analysis, and opinions that go beyond the numbers. Follow Joe's baseball tips on Twitter at @onbaseball and at the On Baseball Google Plus page.
  1. gary s. August 25, 2009 at 5:06 pm
    I was at the game yesterday and 2 peanut vendors blew out their arms throwing peanuts to customers in the upper deck..Minaya says they are game to game for the next homestand.SOMEONE PLEASE END THE SEASON!!!!!!!!!!!THANK U..
  2. mic August 25, 2009 at 8:51 pm

    -It has been reported since Spring that Johan was injured,
    -Then it was reported also there was no STRUCTURAL damage to the elbow.
    -Then the gave him the tinkerbell treatment…no Spring training no WBC, pitch counts etc

    _Santana has been hittable, with lower velocity
    So why did it take so long?

    Wilpon would not allow the DL stint while the Mets were potentially in the race/needed too fill seats. This is not an Omar issue. Its Jeff Wilpon’s stamp.

    Is it also a carryover from last year too?

  3. isuzudude August 26, 2009 at 9:52 am
    Ya know, mic very well may have a good point. There is just no way Omar could have forgotten that Johan’s elbow was barking during spring training. No way. I’m more willing to believe that Omar is covering for a directive by the Wilpons to play down Johan’s quasi-injury this spring because the Wilpons knew they needed Santana, even if not at 100%, to sell tickets and keep the team interesting. In fact, I’m willing to bet that’s what’s going on. And if that’s in fact the truth, than gee whiz these Wilpons are certainly trying their best to make the Mets as bad as possible for a long time to come.
  4. Mike August 26, 2009 at 10:20 am
    Talk about dirty laundry being exposed. The Wilpon’s every initiative and motivation have been exposed this year and I think that, more than anything, will cost Omar his job (or at least his title, penny-pinchers).

    Back when Omar was hired the Wilpons were going through the same thing. So they brought in a name, said they were doing things right, then backed off the spotlight again. History repeats itself. Moreover the Wilpons are clearly unable to handle the heat when the team is bad, but can get by while the team is good. All we can do now is hope they go bankrupt and are forced to sell the team.

  5. mic August 27, 2009 at 8:59 am
    -Santana: It may well be that Santana was obtainable because the Yanks and Soxx were concerned about his health. Nonetheless I AM happy to have him.

    – However what about Ollie and Delgado: Both could have been essentially dumped last fall, but intead 45M were wrapped into injured players. Did we not know both had issues? Was Del (and Ollie) injured during the WBC?

  6. 2009 Analysis: Johan Santana : Mets Today October 24, 2009 at 2:07 pm
    […] to pitch through an elbow injury that was hidden from the public for much of the year (and forgotten by the front office) and resulted in season-ending surgery (MetsToday suspected Johan Santana had an elbow injury as […]