King: Johan Santana barely cracks 80 mph during workout with Yankees

2014 Season Preview: Returning from Injury
Open Thread: 2/25 Camp Notes

Via George King: The Yankees were one of seven teams in attendance for Johan Santana’s workout at a Florida high school earlier today. He topped out at 81 mph and sat mostly in the 77-78 mph range, though his changeup was said to be “impressive.” Scout Tim Naehring was at the workout for the team.

Santana, 35 next month, had surgery to repair a torn shoulder capsule last April, his second such procedure. He is still in rehab mode, so it’s no surprise his arm strength was less than stellar, but torn capsules are usually the kiss of death and Johan has now had two of them. There is no such thing as too much pitching depth but the Yankees do have plenty of fifth starter candidates at the moment. No reason to give Santana even a minor league deal until he shows more arm strength.

2014 Season Preview: Returning from Injury
Open Thread: 2/25 Camp Notes
  • Blake

    Wonder if the Johan would be open to pitching out of the pen

  • Eddard

    There’s Pineda, Phelps, Nuno, Warren. There’s no need for a washed up Santana. We already have enough ballplayers past their primes.

  • OldYanksFan

    No surprise if he’s less than 1 year out from being cut.
    I’d like to know the speed of his change up.
    And does he have a 3rd pitch?
    Maybe a 2 year deal… super cheap.
    If he can get his FB up to 85, he might be effective?

    • botz

      Why would you give him two years? At best he should be looking for a minor league deal and at worse he should hang em up.

      • jjyank

        Yeah, really. The dude has had two major shoulder surgeries and is topping out at 81. How can anyone suggest a multi year deal? Whoever signs him is signing him to a minor league contract for one year. If anyone signs him.

        • OldYanksFan

          The multiyear deal is because… IF… he has anything left, we might not see it until late this year. IF… he recovers, might he be better next year than this year?

  • Nuke Guy

    I was hoping they could get him on a MILB deal. I’ll pass now.

  • Preston

    Sad, that guy was nasty once.

  • Jorge Steinbrenner

    Edwar Ramirez, Part Deux?

  • gageagainstthemachine

    Sweaty Freddy 2.0?
    Check back in on him in 2015…

    • Bo Knows

      The difference between Freddy and Johan now, is essentially the difference between Freddy and Aroldis Chapman

  • TWTR

    I hope the no hitter was worth it to him.

    • Jorge Steinbrenner

      I’d take the no-hitter every time.

    • Mr. Roth

      I’m sure it was. The dude would be filthy rich either way. Now he’s filthy rich and has a no hitter to his name.

      • Matt DiBari


      • Jorge Steinbrenner

        I don’t think there’s a Mets fan in this world that would have traded that in for extra health on his part either. That’s a defining moment for them.

  • RetroRob

    If he can get his fastball up to 85/86, he can probably still be effective as a lefty with that change-up…whatever effective means. Longshot.

    • CashmanNinja

      85ish consistently. All of the reports of his showcase say that he was living in the high 70’s and finally managed to “crank it up” to 81 max. I realize he won’t be the pitcher he once was, but that’s like a Jamie Moyer fastball. Plus he didn’t even have the experience of throwing junk the way Moyer did for so long. So unless Johan can sit at 85 (and not just get there every once in a while while living at 80) then he’s not going to last in the league — even as a reliever. He’s a big name and it’d be a great comeback, but as of now which lefty would you have more faith in: Johan Santana or Vidal Nuno? I’ll take Nuno any day.

      • RetroRob

        Yup, that’s an easy choice. Nuno has way more value.

        He might want to give Frank Tanana a call for tips on how to go from fireballer to junkballer, and my guess is Tanana could still crank it up to 90 on ocassion to keep the hitters honest.

  • Dalek Jeter

    Second LOOGY?

    • Dalek Jeter

      (Just to complete the prophecy of Hughes pitching for the Twins and Santana for the Yankees)

  • Bo Knows

    Man had two slap tears and two surgeries; no chance in hell he’ll be able to much better than that, too extensive a surgery and far too much scar tissue constricting that shoulder. I wouldn’t waist the time on him playing baseball, if he wants to be a coach, sure bring him in and see if he can teach the kids a proper f’n changeup (especially considering that seems to be the pitch this team is completely incapable of teaching)

  • Matt DiBari

    The changeup must have been about 60 mph

    • gageagainstthemachine

      I just assumed he was physically walking the change-up to the plate, which would’ve accounted for its great control.

  • jjyank

    Eesh. I know he’s still in rehab mode, but toping out at 81? That’s brutal.

  • mustang

    If he was willing to take minor league deal and come out of the pen I would do it. “impressive” change ups are hard to find from a lefty even better and this group “Pineda, Phelps, Nuno, Warren” doesn’t exactly exude confidence. Can never have too much pitching, but that said minor league only.

    • mahkk

      I’d take any one of those guys over Santana at this point. Unless he can literally put that changeup EXACTLY where he wants it every single time and he also has crazy movement AND he can throw some other junk, the guy is going to get slaughtered. Keep in mind topping out at 81 means he most likely can’t even get it above 80 consistently. There are probably commenters on this forum that can throw that hard for god’s sake.

  • JRod

    The shoulder capsule surgery has a very small sample size among MLB pitchers, less than 10 cases from what I have read. So it’s a bit hasty to declare it the kiss of death. Found an excellent post on the subject from early last year, at a White Sox blog: Apparently the Chisox John Danks had the surgery and came back rather quickly, if ingloriously, to be a robust innings eater on a terrible team. Anyway I have to throw some respect to Santana for attempting a comeback when he could be shaking pina coladas on his yacht at 81 mph.

  • B-42

    What no-hitter?? That was a fair ball down the left field line!!