Last month on WFAN, Sandy Alderson didn't sound particularly warm to the idea of Santana pitching in the WBC. I don't blame Alderson, because, despite Santana's accomplishments last year, he has a lot to prove in terms of his ability to stay strong and healthy in 2013. But, as Alderson said, it is encouraging that Santana feels strong enough to be able to pitch competitively so early in the year.
The moment the genuinely Mets question their chances to be in a pennant this summer, I expect they'll start shopping Santana, but only if he's pitching well and looking strong. To do that, I think they're going to get him early rest and pace his performance. I think this is part of why they're still seeking a veteran starting pitcher capable of pitching in relief. Johan will have value if he looks good and the Mets are willing to eat most of his remaining salary, which I think they will. Teams are more likely to pay for a guy like Santana than a hitter, when in a pennant race, and this front office knows that. But, Santana first needs to go slow and create confidence he'll be capable for a contendor in the second half...