PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. (AP) - Johan Santana will not make his first spring training appearance for the New York Mets this year until mid-March.
General manager Sandy Alderson said Friday the 33-year old left-hander is expected to pitch in an exhibition game sometime from March 10-12 instead of March 2.
A two-time AL Cy Young Award winner, Santana missed 2011 following shoulder surgery and went 6-9 with a 4.85 ERA in 21 starts last year, when he pitched the first no-hitter in Mets history on June 1 against St. Louis. He didn't pitch after Aug. 17 because of lower back inflammation.
Says Alderson: "There's no structural issue. It's just a matter of building up strength."