Happy 32nd Birthday Johan. Did you know that you're going to miss the entire 2011 season?
The buzz in New York this morning is that Johan Santana's season is in jeopardy for the Mets. Steve Popper and Bob Klapisch of the Bergen Record penned the story which appeared on the NorthJersey.com website.
The article includes extraordinary quotes from an unnamed Mets source, surrounded by stock information readily available about the plan to get Santana back on the mound by mid-summer.
It would be nice if reporters "onsite" in Port St. Lucie could actually confirm or deny how Santana's rehab is actually going, since a "source" close to me actually watched him the other day. My neighbor came back from his vacation in Florida and said Santana seemed to be in great spirits as he moved about the Mets complex.
Let's examine the three "revelations" without hyperbole:
1) "One member of the Mets' organization said that the team is ready to shut down the rehabilitation schedule for Santana if he does not feel comfortable after what is expected to be a simple session of playing catch."
If Santana hasn't felt comfortable "playing catch" it's apparently news to him. Stating he was "in shock" by today's story should be all anyone needs to know about the lefty who spent his 32nd birthday dodging anonymous bullets.
Johan Santana will:
2) "According to the source, Santana has not been progressing in his return to light throwing and the team is concerned enough to halt this section of his rehabilitation. By doing so, the Mets' timetable of a possible late-June, early-July return to the team would likely be wiped out."
The problem with this statement is that Santana isn't scheduled to begin throwing off of a mound until next week. Somebody in the Mets organization should probably have alerted Santana about the delay before telling Klapisch or Popper.
3) "Internally, the Mets believe they'll be "lucky" if Santana pitches this year."
Mets employees have been allowed to publicly speculate on all aspects of the organization for years. A veteran reporter such as Klapisch simply BYPASSES any Mets employee who supposedly deals with media/public relations. Although some fans may feel that Klapisch has an "axe to grind", he actually has a "job to do". Loose cannons who collect paychecks from the Mets have been feeding him and the rest of the New York baseball writers with story content for years.
What should be appalling to Mets fans is why a consummate professional such as Sandy Alderson continues to let his employees say whatever they want to whomever they want.