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Fantasy Baseball 2011: Johan Santana, Cole Hamels, Bryce Harper and Other Spring Training Thoughts

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PORT ST. LUCIE FL - FEBRUARY 17:  Pitcher Johan Santana #57 of the New York Metsworks out during spring training at Tradition Field on February 17 2011 in Port St. Lucie Florida.  (Photo by Marc Serota/Getty Images)
PORT ST. LUCIE FL - FEBRUARY 17: Pitcher Johan Santana #57 of the New York Metsworks out during spring training at Tradition Field on February 17 2011 in Port St. Lucie Florida. (Photo by Marc Serota/Getty Images)
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I was reading Buster Olney's blogpost yesterday morning, and in it there is word that Met's starting pitcher Johan Santana's recovery from shoulder surgery is coming along slowly. Steve Popper and Bob Klapisch from the Berger Record report the following in Sunday's paper:

One member of the Mets’ organization said that the team is ready to shut down the rehabilitation schedule for

Santana if he does not feel comfortable after what is expected to be a simple session of playing catch.

According to the source, Santana has not been progressing in his return to light throwing and the team is

concerned enough to halt this section of his rehabilitation. By doing so, the Mets’ timetable of a possible late-

June, early-July return to the team would likely be wiped out.

Internally, the Mets believe they’ll be "lucky" if Santana pitches this year.

Fantasy owners in redraft leagues should stay away from Santana this season, but those in keeper and dynasty leagues should bid cautiously, as pitchers coming back from this type of injury struggle, and there is no way to know how Santana will pitch when he returns. 

The Phillies may still be in on Rangers infielder Michael Young, according to Phil Rogers from the Chicago Tribune:

The Phillies might not want to do it, but with Cliff Lee and Roy Halladay at the top of the rotation they have the depth to send Roy Oswalt or Cole Hamels to Texas in exchange for Young and one of the Rangers' highly respected pitching prospects (Alexi Ogando, Michael Kirkman, Martin Perez, Tanner Scheppers, etc.). The teams have been following each other closely during spring training.

In their talks, according to Rogers, the Phils initially offered Joe Blanton and Placido Polanco for Michael Young, but the Rangers balked at taking on Young''s $16 million option in 2013. Apparently, talks are continuing. I can't see the Phils dealing Hamels or Oswalt, but I put nothing past GM Ruben Amaro. I was listening to the MLB station on XM175 yesterday, and Jim Duquette and Holden Kushner interviewed Amaro. One of the last questions they had for Amaro was whether the Phillies had enough flexibility to add salary, presumably talking about Young. Amaro's response was "all those rumors are BS. I can't add anymore salary." I wonder if this comment is the same as the "that ship has sailed" comment from one of the Phillies front office guys when asked about the possibility of signing Cliff Lee back in November 2010.

More after the jump:

 

The Nationals sent prospect Bryce Harper to Low A Hagerstown to start the season, but the thought is he will make it to AA this season with a chance for a September callup. i hope to catch Harper when they play at the Trenton Thunder this season.

Blue Jays prospect Brett Lawrie is turning enough heads in spring training that he could break camp with the club when the season starts. He is learning third base this spring, so I could see him being sent down to start the season. But if he continues to hit well, and can play a solid third base, the Blue Jays will call him up sometime in mid-season. If he is available in keeper leagues, he should be picked up, as his bat is close to being ready.

 

More from Olney's blogpost:

Rave reviews continue to pour in about Gio Gonzalez of the Oakland Athletics, who made great improvement last season and seems on the cusp of climbing into the next tier of pitchers. Said one observer: "I think he's figured it out."

Gonzalez appears to be growing as a starting pitcher, and could improve upon his solid 2010 season where he went 15-9 with a 3.23 ERA and a 1.31 WHIP. He also struck out 171 batters this season. Can he approach 200 Ks this season?

Indians third base prospect Lonnie Chisenhall is also getting rave reviews this spring training and there is talk he could open the season with the big league team. ESPN's Keith Law mentioned in his Thursday chat that Chisenhall looks improved at the plate this spring training. He is hitting .478-.538-.913 with 2 HRs, 4 RBIs, a 7-2 K/BB rate in his 23 spring at bats.