Johan Santana Injury: Updates on Mets Star's Ankle Injury

Donald WoodFeatured ColumnistJuly 21, 2012

ATLANTA, GA - JULY 15:  Johan Santana #57 of the New York Mets pitches to the Atlanta Braves at Turner Field on July 15, 2012 in Atlanta, Georgia.  (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

The New York Mets' run toward the MLB playoffs has gotten much tougher with the team's placement of All-Star starting pitcher Johan Santana on the 15-day disabled list with an ankle injury.'s Adam Rubin is reporting via Twitter about Santana heading to the DL:

Johan Santana to DL, officially with ankle injury.

— Adam Rubin (@AdamRubinESPN) July 21, 2012

There were concerns from around the majors that Santana was going too hard too soon after having shoulder surgery, but the pitcher's recent struggles don't appear to be related to that previous injury.

Just as Rubin stated, the belief is that any other soreness in his shoulder or any missteps in his delivery can be attributed to the sore ankle.


What It Means

The New York Mets sit 4.5 games out of one of the NL wild-card spots, and losing Santana may be too big of a blow for the talented team to overcome.

While R.A. Dickey is having the greatest season of his career, the lack of depth in the starting rotation and in the bullpen will be the ultimate undoing of the Mets in 2012. Santana's absence for three starts at least may be the team's playoff death knell.

Santana and the team will slow-play this injury so that it doesn't get worse and cost him even more time later in 2012 or even into 2013.

Playing it safe now is the right way to go.


What's Next?

For the New York Mets, putting Santana on the DL was a no-brainer. With the ankle injury not being that serious, the team is playing it safe because it is obviously screwing up the star’s delivery.

After missing the 2011 season with shoulder surgery, the last thing the Mets need is Santana altering his delivery to compensate for the sore ankle and re-injuring himself. It's better to lose him for 15 days instead of much longer.

With the Mets slowly falling out of contention in the National League, this could be the kind of loss that kills any remaining hope for the New York faithful. While that is a hard pill to swallow, it’s better for Santana's long-term success.


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