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Everyone insists Johan Santana is healthy despite 7.98 ERA

Aug 13, 2012, 10:15 AM EDT

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Johan Santana got rocked for eight runs in 1.1 innings Saturday in his return from the disabled list and now has a 7.98 ERA in nine starts since throwing a no-hitter against the Cardinals on June 1.

Since racking up 134 pitches while making history Santana has allowed 39 runs in 44 innings, serving up 11 homers and a .328 opponents’ batting average while failing to make it beyond five innings in six of his nine starts.

And yet everyone, including Santana, continues to insist that the former Cy Young winner is healthy. Here’s what manager Terry Collins told Conor Orr of the Newark Star Ledger:

I’m planning on, certainly, in five days, seeing him back out there. Any conversations we have about the future, that’s going to be down the road. They’re not gonna be right now. I think Johan’s shoulder is fine, we’ll take a look at him after a few more starts and decide how he’s feeling… but right now, according to me, I have no plans of shutting Johan Santana down.

Here’s the thing, though: Either he’s hurt or he’s just terrible. And which is better, really?

It’s like someone being a complete jerk at a party, making a fool of himself and harassing everyone, and then insisting that he’s not even drunk. OK fine, you’re not drunk, but doesn’t that just mean you’re a huge (sober) jerk? And in Santana’s case, if he’s truly not pitching through more arm problems and still has a 7.98 ERA in his last nine starts … well, that’s hardly any less disturbing.

  1. sabathiawouldbegoodattheeighthtoo - Aug 13, 2012 at 11:13 AM

    The guy is a big time flyball pitcher. I remember one of his good starts earlier in the year where he went 7 or 8 innings and had one out on the ground. With a fastball around 90mph his margin for error is TINY. I am sure people who are smarter than me could compare his BABIP and HR/FB ratios from before the no-no to after, but I would guess that we are not seeing much more than a stat correction or luck swing.

  2. theboysofdallas - Aug 13, 2012 at 11:13 AM

    Just goes to show what injuries can do to a person, remember when he was on the twins

  3. tuftsb - Aug 13, 2012 at 12:14 PM

    Was he actually 16 when he signed with the Astros in 1995?

  4. plmathfoto - Aug 13, 2012 at 3:43 PM

    If any one else watched his last start, it reminded me of a game earlier in the year, I think against Atlanta as well, very few hard hit balls, bloops, bleeders, and groundballs, wasn’t near as bad as the stat line looked. Give it another start or two and see what happens.

  5. pisano - Aug 13, 2012 at 4:55 PM

    With that era, he’d fit into the Red Sox rotation comfortably.

    • sabathiawouldbegoodattheeighthtoo - Aug 13, 2012 at 10:50 PM

      but he’s not a complete effing ahole, so that would never work. They have standards over there in bean town

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