UPDATE: According to Rubin, Santana will throw three innings in a rehab start Sunday with Class A Brooklyn. He’s on track to return next Saturday.
7:44 PM: The Mets recently decided to give Johan Santana a bit of a break following an ankle injury which led to some arm fatigue, but he could be back in the starting rotation one week from today.
According to Adam Rubin of ESPN New York, Santana will make a minor league rehab start on Sunday or Monday. Assuming all goes well, this could put him on track to return from the disabled list next Friday or Saturday against the Braves.
Santana was knocked around for six runs over three innings in his last start on July 20 against the Dodgers and allowed six runs or more in each of his last three starts prior to being placed on the disabled list. The Mets believe his lack of effectiveness was due to him putting extra stress on his arm to compensate for an ankle injury suffered on July 6. The 33-year-old southpaw has a 3.98 ERA and 105/38 K/BB ratio over 19 starts this season after missing all of last year rehabbing from shoulder surgery.
The Orioles singlehandedly kept the rumor mill churning this weekend. MLB Network’s Jon Morosi reports that the club is interested in making a play for free agent right-hander Lance Lynn, adding him to a list of potential candidates that also includes free agent righty Alex Cobb. The two are expected to command similar contracts in free agency, but Morosi notes that the Orioles may prefer Cobb based on his familiarity with the AL East.
Lynn, 30, is two years removed from Tommy John surgery on his right elbow. Despite missing the 2016 season, he bounced back with a respectable 11-8 record in 33 starts and complemented his efforts with a 3.43 ERA, 3.8 BB/9 and 7.4 SO/9 over 186 1/3 innings for the 2017 Cardinals. He lost several days with a blister on his pitching hand in early September, but managed to avoid any major injuries and can reasonably be expected to shoulder another heavy workload in 2018.
Lynn may not be the Orioles’ first choice to beef up their starting rotation, but there’s no doubt that he’ll be in high demand as one of very few viable starters on the market this winter. The veteran righty rejected his one-year, $17.4 million qualifying offer from the Cardinals on Thursday and will likely be seeking a multi-year contract, one that Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch estimates around five years and $100+ million. If the Orioles are willing to bite that bullet, they’ll still need to compensate the Cardinals with their third pick in next year’s draft.