New York Mets
left-hander Johan Santana
threw off a mound Sunday for the first time since he was shut down last August.
Santana said he was good to go after throwing a 20-pitch session at the Mets' training facility in Port St. Lucie, Fla. He is on track to start the team's season opener against the visiting San Diego Padres
on April 1.
"I don't think it was my best or anything, but it's Day 1," Santana said on MLB.com. "You've got to start at some point."
However, Santana will not pitch in the World Baseball Classic, CBSSports.com reported.
Santana threw his first bullpen session Sunday and said he did, "OK." Mets manager Terry Collins said Santana will pitch in his first spring game on March 2 against the Miami Marlins
Santana struggled after his no-hitter last June while coming back from left elbow surgery. He had a 2.38 ERA the first two months of the season but had an 8.27 ERA after the 134-pitch no-no.
The team shut him down in August, saying he had lower back inflammation. He also had trouble with a sore ankle.
Santana is expected to make his first spring training start on March 2 against the Miami Marlins.
"Today was a beginning for me," Santana said. "You always worry about how you feel and everything, but at the same time, I was just trying to get my job done."
Manager Terry Collins said Santana appears to be back to normal.
"It's routine in the sense that he's going about it the way he always used to go about it," Collins said. "We know he's healthy. We know he's rested. So we'll just make sure that he doesn't skip a beat."
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