Johan Santana throws two innings in Venezuela

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Johan Santana officially began his latest comeback attempt last night in Venezuela, retiring all six batters he faced in a winter ball appearance for his first action since a torn Achilles’ tendon in June.

According to the Associated Press he threw 17 pitches in two innings and failed to record a strikeout.

Santana seemed close to being called up by the Orioles when the injury ended his season and he’s still a long way from being declared healthy, but as far as baby steps go it was a good one for the former two-time Cy Young winner.

Santana hasn’t pitched in the majors since 2012, as shoulder injuries repeatedly derailed what once looked like a potential Hall of Fame career. At age 36 he’ll almost surely have to settle for a minor-league contract and compete for a job during spring training, and the Yankees are among the teams said to be interested.