Mets Trade For Santana

Posted by Tim Malcolm, Tue, January 29, 2008 04:56 PM | Comments: 67

Well, crap.

USA Today is reporting a four-for-one swap, as the Mets will send Phillip Humber, Carlos Gomez, Kevin Mulvey and Deoils Guerra to the Mets for the All-World left-hander.

More on this to come, but a few knee-jerk quick thoughts:

1. The Mets stole this one. They didn’t have to give up their No. 1 prospect.
2. The Mets are suddenly the favorite to win both the East and the NL.
3. We’re in trouble.

UPDATE (9:00 p.m.): The deal isn’t quite official yet, as the Mets have a little less than two days to reach a long-term (six or seven years) agreement with Santana. Considering the work the Mets have put into the deal, I’d have to think the agreement will be finalized and Santana will don No. 57 for the New York orange and blue.

Here are Santana’s numbers, in case you’ve been under limestone:

2007: 219 IP / 15-13 / 3.33 ERA / 235 K / 52 BB
2006: 233.7 IP / 19-6 / 2.77 ERA / 245 K / 47 BB / Cy Young
2005: 231.7 IP / 16-7 / 2.87 ERA / 238 K / 45 BB
2004: 228 IP / 20-6 / 2.61 ERA / 265 K / 54 BB / Cy Young
Career: 1308.7 IP / 93-44 / 3.22 ERA / 1381 K / 364 BB

Santana’s a few solid years away from a Hall of Fame enshrinement. His entire career in the Majors has been spent in Minnesota, where he’s been the most dominant pitcher of the last five years.

What Phillies fans need to know off the bat:

1. Johan Santana has pitched in the American League. Now he comes over here. Crap.
His career numbers against the NL: 182.7 IP / 16-4 / 2.27 ERA / 191 K / 46 BB
Of course, he’ll be facing many young and poor offenses, and often (Washington, Florida, Pittsburgh, Houston, Saint Louis). Other teams are filled with players who haven’t seen him much (Phillies, Atlanta, San Diego, Los Angeles, Chicago, Milwaukee). Simply put, at least in 2008, Santana could demolish the National League for 25 wins.

2. Santana is a lefty. He punishes lefties.
His career numbers against lefties: 1192 PA / .223 AVG / .283 OBP / .371 SLG / 289 K / 84 BB
Before anyone makes the joke that the line resembles Pedro Feliz’ career line, I have to admit, righties actually hit worse against him. Seriously. Chase Utley, Ryan Howard and Geoff Jenkins will struggle, no doubt. And, well, Feliz, Pat Burrell and Carlos Ruiz will likely struggle too. Jimmy Rollins and Shane Victorino will just have to guess which side will be best.

3. Santana is durable.
Since 2005, Santana has only once pitched less than five innings in an outing, and that was his last start in 2007, when the Twins were way out of the playoff race. He’ll go six and seven without any problems, and at the very least, he’ll keep his team well in the game as the late innings approach. If the Mets offense gets the clutch monkey off their back, it could be smooth sailing for Santana.

4. There is a chance.
Santana’s not a fly ball pitcher or ground ball pitcher; in fact, he tends to give up more flies than grounders for his career. At least in Citizens Bank Park, there’s a chance of jumping on him with the longball. Of course, that’s if the Phils can lay off him. What Santana is … is a strikeout pitcher. And the Phillies have a slew of free swingers.

This has the possibility of ending up like the A-Rod deal for the Yankees. Just speculation, really. There’s been precedent with adding the best player in his league, then coming up short for years on end afterward. Is it a chemistry thing? Is it a karma thing? Is it a performance thing? I don’t know. Chances are Santana will gel right into that clubhouse and he and Pedro Martinez will make an unstoppable, 35-win duo in 2008. But then again, there is a chance that could all come to naught.

How do I feel about the deal, really?

Johan Santana will make the Mets better. As long as he’s healthy — absolutely. He could improve the team by 10 wins. If this Mets rotation stays healthy, or finds the pieces along the way (if injury were to strike other pitchers), they should win the East. As strong as the Phillies offense is, I can’t see the pitching overcoming what now looks to be a very even Mets club.

Now, if the Phillies can turn around and respond to this deal with pitching (Erik Bedard seems unlikely, but there’s something out there, right?), I could definitely say the Mets and Phillies are dead even. But at this moment, if Santana were to sign after a long-term deal is finalized, the Mets are the team to beat in the National League East.

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About Tim Malcolm

Tim Malcolm has written 1947 articles on Phillies Nation.

  • Posts: 0 ryan howard


  • Posts: 0 Kevin B.

    Geez. The majority of the posts ive read thus far are from mets fan rubbing it in. I, too, am a mets fan, but am not here to rub it in. I usually don’t post much, but I feel obligated to. I apologize for the ignorance of some of the mets fans here. As it stands, nothing is official until tht pen hits the paper. With that being said, once it is official (i hope), I still believe the Phillies are the team to beat. Not going on paper or stats, but they are the defending NL east champions making them the team to beat, the same with the Mets going into the 2007 season. I’m excited for this trade because it will add more fuel to the fire of this “rivalry”. Should be a fun 2008 season.

  • Posts: 0 RollinsEatsAss

    Phillies Fans:

    Let’s recap – After almost two year of dominating the NL East and staying in first place for the better part of two full seasons, the Mets suffer the most historic collapse in the history of baseball.

    This epic collapse allows the mediocre Phillies to just sqeak by the Mets by one game.

    Based on this, the Phillies move into the playoffs (for the first time in 14 years) and proceed to by destroyed in 3 straight games by the Colorado Rockies.

    Yep – it is clear to me that the Phillies were WAAAAY better than the Mets (that is sarcasm for all you barely literate Philadelphians).

    Now the Mets add the consensus best pitcher in the major leagues without giving up a single everyday player.

    Face it, the Phillies will be looking up at the Mets for years to come.

    Philadelphia is once again irrelevent in baseball and in the world, especially when compared to New York.

    Deal with it.

  • Posts: 0 Brooks

    Unreal how many doom and gloom-sayers there are out there. All this has done is to make it more fun to go. I’m sure Jimmy,, Pat, Utley, Howard and the others that systematically destroyed the Mets last year will have a grand time! I plan on it.

    Go Phils!

  • Posts: 0 #57 KKKKKKKKKKing of Queens

    Phillies Fans,

    I am not here to rub it in. I will say this though. Your lineup scared me so much last year. Always wondered how we would get through the meat of that order. Victorino is a pain in the neck. Rollins is a terrific player. Ryan Howard is pretty smooth for a big man at first base and his bat is terrifying. Chase Utley is a great hitter. Having Johan Santana face to face that lineup makes me more confident…not cocky. We’ll see what happens. Long way to go until Opening Day. But this rivalry will grow.

    Go Giants!

  • Posts: 0 PhillR

    King of Queens: Repeat after me. Normalize for park effect and the two offenses were equivalent last season.

    Mets RS on the road: 437
    Phillies RS on the road: 442

  • [...] PhillR on Mets Trade For Santana:"King of Queens: Repeat after me. Normalize for park effect and the two…" [...]

  • Posts: 0 PatheticPhillies

    phils suck k thanx

  • Posts: 0 Gnomicide

    Why do Mets fans pretend that two series worth of that “epic collapse” of theirs wasn’t against the Phillies? The Phillies were part of the Mets epic collapse, not bystanders.

  • Posts: 0 notsofastmetfans

    I think a lot of you Mets fans are forgetting that theres still 162 games to be played. Yeah you got Santana on a steal but IMO the Mets have more problems than the phillies do. Don’t for get that Santana can only start every 5th day. After that Pedro is gonna have a harder time getting batters out throwing 85 mph. Jon Maine struggled at points in the second half last year and may have over acheived. After that El Duque and Oliver Perez arent any good at all. Our rotation doesnt have that big name stud but does have 4 guys i feel confident will be able to get us a win each night. You have a lot of issues in the bullpen. Wagner struggled a lot last year, particularly against the phils (Pat Burrell). And if you go offensively position by position the only mets i would take over phillies are Wright and Beltran.

    Earlier this year J-Roll said the phils could win 100 games. Before this trade i saw the mets finishing 3rd now it looks like the the MVPs prediction will have to come true again.

  • Posts: 0 Holy Johan!

    I don’t even see where the debate is. The Phillies one the division by 1 game last year. The Mets just got the BEST pitcher in baseball, a guy who will easily win 15-22 games. The Mets haven’t lost anybody of importance from last year except for Glavine who they just replaced with SANTANA.

    I’m sure though that Lidge will hand Phillie well, I’m sure he’s not a disaster waiting to happen.

    Just face it Phillies fans….The Mets are clearly the favorites in the National League East and probably the National League all together.

  • Posts: 0 Chelle

    I am a Mets fan, living in the Philly area (unfortunately i have to deal with Phillies fans). While I am very happy with the trade, it doesn’t seem right to automatically declare the Mets will win the division. ESPN has been doing it all day, pretty much. Johan is an amazing pitcher, and it will make the Mets’ rotation sooo much better. but I am sick and tired of Jimmy Rollins. I respect that he is a great player and MVP, but he is calling for 100 wins! 100 wins! I know he proved that the Phillies were the team to beat last season, but that was partly because the Mets demolished themselves. You have no idea what is going to happen in a 162 game season! He is being way too cocky. And by the way, the Phillies suck.

  • Posts: 0 notsofastmetfans

    Jimmy Rollins said that they are capable of winning 100 games and thats their goal for the season, not that the phils are a lock to win 100 games.

    Holy Johan:
    I think your forgetting what happened last year. It wasnt as if the Phils and Mets were neck and neck all season and the Phils barely pulled it out. The Mets totally fell apart. When the starting pitching got it done the bullpen fell apart, when the bullpen held them down you couldnt score, when your offense got it done your pitching sucked. All the problems came out, and aside from Santana they havent done anything in the offseason to correct them. And the Mets did lose Lo Duca who was killer out of the two hole. Also dont forget…the phillies have an eight game win streak against the mets

  • Posts: 0 Holy Johan!

    Lo Duca wasn’t there 2 hole hitter, Castillo was. and lo duca was hardly killer last year with his 270 avg. and many nagging injuries. They also have Pedro for a full year who without the burden of carrying the staff could have a big year, not pedro ’99 but still good. The Mets do have holes but are clearly deeper in pitching now, even Maine and Perez both won 15 games last year at ages 25 and 26 respectively. The Phillies have way too much riding on Lidge, if he cannot handle East coast baseball the Phills are done. Moving Myers back to the bullpen would make your rotation Hamels and a bunch of nobodys. The balance of power has shifted, September collapse is a distant memory.

    Not exactly like you made the best of your post season berth anywa., When was the last time the Phillies won a playoff game? nuff said.

  • Posts: 0 Cole Hamels

    Wow, can this really be happening? The Mets just aquired the best pitcher in baseball (at least 1 million times better than me) and now are way better than us. Lets face it, our team sucks ass, our management sticks and we clearly overahcieved last season. I wouldnt be surprised if the Nationals or Marlins finish ahead of us in the NL East standings in 2008.

  • Posts: 0 Ryan Howard

    Yo Phils management sucks my BBC. I mean im the best lefty hitter in baseball, and they cant even recognize that fact. Why cant they just SHOW ME THE MONEY, and get this shit over with. Anyways, I’m clearly terrified of facing Johan, and Chase recently told me the same thing, the New York Metropolitans are the best and we stand no chance when johan pitches against us, as he will clearly dominate in the NL.

  • Posts: 0 MATT THE METS FAN

    ^^^ wow your best two players have given up on your team… what a shame..

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