Back in 2011, Santana spent the season rehabbing his arm as he recovered from major shoulder surgery. After declaring that he was ready to go, he pitched shutout ball on Opening day, showing that he really was ready.
in his last start before the no-hitter, Johan blanked the Padres on 96 pitches. He had to work harder to take care of the Cardinals. Before Friday, the most pitches he ever threw in a game was 125. It took him an extra nine pitches to complete this game.
Terry Collins kept him in the game despite obvious concerns for his starter's arm, and when he made a mound visit after Santana walked his fifth batter, people assumed the worst. Fortunately, Collins only asked him how he was doing, to which Santana said he was fine. Thankfully, Santana prove himself right, and managed to take care of everything else.
If this does not say that Santana is back, I have no idea what will.
Johan will obviously rest up after his performance, and his next start will be pushed back. Hopefully, he'll be ready after that.
Oh, and let's not forget Justin Turner, who, despite his injury, had the strength to deliver a whipped cream pie right in Johan's face. Classic.