Mets LHP Santana to have shoulder surgery Tuesday

Johan Santana is set for another shoulder surgery that he hopes
will save his career.

The former New York Mets ace will have surgery Tuesday to repair
the re-torn anterior capsule in his pitching shoulder, the team
announced Saturday. The operation will be performed by Mets medical
director Dr. David Altchek.

Santana is likely to miss the entire season for the second time
in three years, which means he may have thrown his last pitch for
the Mets. The two-time Cy Young Award winner is in the final year
of a $137.5 million contract.

”It’s very difficult. If anybody can do it, it would be
Johan,” Mets pitching coach Dan Warthen said. ”We wish him luck
and we feel sick about what’s happened.”

Santana had surgery on Sept. 14, 2010, and did not make it back
to the major leagues until last April 5. The 34-year-old
left-hander didn’t pitch in any exhibition games this spring and
threw his last bullpen session in early March without the team’s
permission.

Mets third baseman David Wright said he was not surprised by
Santana’s decision to have surgery.

”I’ve known Johan long enough to know that I don’t think that
he’d want to go out like that. He’s going to probably work just as
hard, if not – if it’s possible – work harder, to come back from
this. I wouldn’t be surprised at all if I see him pitch again,”
Wright said after the Mets lost to Baltimore 7-1 in their
exhibition finale.

Santana’s comeback reached its apex last June 1 when he pitched
the first no-hitter in Mets history, throwing a career-high 134
pitches that night in his second consecutive shutout. But he was
3-7 with an 8.27 ERA after that, including 0-5 with a 15.63 ERA
after throwing eight scoreless innings against the Los Angeles
Dodgers on June 30.

He went on the disabled list for three weeks because of a
sprained ankle and didn’t pitch after Aug. 17 because of lower back
inflammation.

Warthen said Santana’s injury isn’t ”a byproduct of the
no-hitter.”

New York owes Santana $31 million as part of the six-year deal
he signed before the 2008 season, and general manager Sandy
Alderson said the remainder of the contract is not covered by
insurance.