Originally posted on MetsZilla  |  Last updated 3/6/12

It’s been a long road to recovery for New York Mets ace Johan Santana, but today the lefty will make his first appearance against major league hitters since September of 2010.  So far this Spring things have gone as well as can be expected and the 32-year-old seems more and more excited with each step he takes, even offering up the following tweet just a few days back after putting in his bullpen session:


Another good day on the mound today!!! March 1, 2012 2:46 pm via Twitter for BlackBerry®ReplyRetweetFavorite @johansantana El Gocho believe it!

As it comes time to face opposing major league hitters, Mike Puma of the New York Post reports that Santana, his coach, and teammates are all excited for day ahead:

Photo by Michael G. Baron

The only guy that is probably more excited than me is Johan,” Terry Collins said. “I’m real excited to see him out there, and obviously two days after [today] is when I want to really see how he’s doing, because that will be a test on how he’s going to bounce back.”

Santana will throw 40 pitches or two innings, whichever comes first. If all goes well, he would stretch out for a longer outing Sunday against the Marlins.

“It’s to the point where it’s going to be exciting, but he’s also getting ready, he’s got to get himself ready for the season, too,” catcher Josh Thole said. “It’s not necessarily a rehab program. He’s going to come in and throw two innings just like the other starters.”

Thole said Santana’s velocity is still progressing, but his control isn’t an issue.”

Wow, it’s been a long time since we have seen Johan this close to meaningful action and I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t going to be watching this one with my fingers crossed.  The reports thus far are enc0uraging but Terry called it right, the real test will come a couple days after his start today, when his body has a chance to react and recover from the work load.  As always, here’s to hoping!
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