Santana will shoulder full load

CHICAGO -- Johan Santana is on track to make 32 starts and log roughly 190 innings -- farfetched numbers heading into the season, when no one knew what to expect as he returned from surgery to repair a torn anterior capsule in his left shoulder.

Johan Santana

Johan Santana

#57 SP
New York Mets

2012 STATS

  • GM15
  • W5

  • L4

  • BB31

  • K90

  • ERA3.00

Terry Collins suggested Santana is not going to have his starts spread out or cut short later in the season to limit his innings count after the southpaw missed all of 2011. So that means a five-man rotation the rest of the way, without Santana’s turns adjusted, according to Collins.

“You bet,” the manager said.

Added Collins: “My conscience is pretty clear we can ride him. As I said in spring training, ‘If we get 28 starts out of him, we’re going to be a pretty good club.’

“If we get 32 starts out of him, that means we are going to be a good club. Right now, I just talked to him about some stuff and he said, ‘Look, I just want you to know I feel really good.’ Those are all real good signs that we can start to relax and use him how you’d use any pitcher.”

Collins said pitching coach Dan Warthen has now concluded a 115- to 120-pitch count can be the norm.

“Which means he’s fine,” Collins said.

Collins is no longer concerned about any negative consequences from the 134-pitch no-hitter on June 1, either.

“It eases my mind completely that he came out of it OK,” Collins said. “I’m really happy for it. I’m happy that he got the no-hitter, but as we continue down this road, he’s going to throw up a lot of zeroes. And he was only going to do that if he was healthy.”