Johan Santana still hoping to pitch for Mets this season

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Setbacks in his recovery from shoulder surgery ruined Johan Santana’s plans to join the Mets by mid-August, but the two-time Cy Young winner is still holding out some hope of pitching in the majors before the end of the season.

Santana resumed his minor-league rehab assignment Saturday at Single-A with two innings of one-run ball and, barring another setback, is scheduled to make his second rehab start Friday.

Because the minor-league season is coming to an end any further pitching will have to be in instructional leagues or, if Santana gets his wish, with the Mets.

Assistant general manager John Ricco smartly told Andy McCullough of the Newark Star Ledger that the Mets’ priority is getting Santana ready for 2012 rather than making sure he can make at least one appearance this season, but did admit that “we’ll have to get creative because the minor-league seasons will end.”

Phillies’ Bryce Harper to miss start of season after elbow surgery

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PHILADELPHIA – Phillies slugger Bryce Harper will miss the start of the 2023 season after he had reconstructive right elbow surgery.

The operation was performed by Dr. Neal ElAttrache in Los Angeles.

Harper is expected to return to Philadelphia’s lineup as the designated hitter by the All-Star break. He could be back in right field by the end of the season, according to the team.

The 30-year-old Harper suffered a small ulnar collateral ligament tear in his elbow in April. He last played right field at Miami on April 16. He had a platelet-rich plasma injection in May and shifted to designated hitter.

Harper met Nov. 14 with ElAttrache, who determined the tear did not heal on its own, necessitating surgery.

Even with the elbow injury, Harper led the Phillies to their first World Series since 2009, where they lost in six games to Houston. He hit .349 with six homers and 13 RBIs in 17 postseason games.

In late June, Harper suffered a broken thumb when he was hit by a pitch and was sidelined for two months. The two-time NL MVP still hit .286 with 18 homers and 65 RBIs for the season.

Harper left Washington and signed a 13-year, $330 million contract with the Phillies in 2019. A seven-time All-Star, Harper has 285 career home runs.

With Harper out, the Phillies could use Nick Castellanos and Kyle Schwarber at designated hitter. J.T. Realmuto also could serve as the DH when he needs a break from his catching duties.