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Latest Johan Santana News & Speculation

Maybe the title shouldn't have included "News"? Regardless, in New York, John Harper refutes the Livan Hernandez-to-the-Mets rumors as just that. He writes the Mets are "very much in pursuit of the Twins' left-hander [Johan Santana], according to baseball sources."

Joel Sherman of the New York Post says basically the same thing, but it is this doozy from Hank Steinbrenner that is more interesting.

"But as far as missing the playoffs - if we miss the playoffs by the end of this year, I don't know how patient I'll be. But it won't be against the players. It won't be a matter of that. It will be a matter of maybe certain people in the organization could have done something else."

This makes free-agent-GM-to-be Brian Cashman the fall guy because Hank isn't going to bluster about his brother Hal. The other 29 major league clubs are in a win-win. Either the Yankees unload their best prospects for Santana and then sign him to an enormous deal that can only get worse or they let go of the man responsible for the strategy that put the teams' minor league system in the upper echelons of baseball.

Meanwhile in Minnesota, Sid Hartman matter-of-factly writes "...after spending all that money on Cuddyer, Morneau and Joe Mauer, the chances are good Santana will be traded to the Mets for a bunch of prospects before long." However, I can't believe Hank Steinbrenner's latest quest for attention won't cause the Twins' GM Bill Smith continuing indecision about dealing Santana.

Maybe he believes Brian Cashman really wants to re-up with the Yankees aftert the season and thinks Cashman will cave and include four of his top young players.

A complicating factor for Smith is this morning's news that left-hander Francisco Liriano feels 100% after last winter's Tommy John surgery. If he doesn't want to rebuild his farm system with the Mets offer of four prospects, then the idea of Santana and Liriano striking out 400+ batters between then may be a appear to be solid alternative.