The Orioles announced that they’ve selected the contract of Johan Santana and placed him on the 15-day disabled list as he continues his recovery from left shoulder surgery. Santana had an opt-out clause in his contract that would’ve allowed him to elect free agency at midnight tonight. Instead, he will be added to the team’s 40-man roster, though not the 25-man roster for the time being. MASNsports.com’s Roch Kubatko tweets that technically, Santana did exercise his opt-out, which is what prompted the team to instead purchase his contract and place him on the Major League disabled list.
Santana’s recovery has progressed nicely, as he’s pitched in extended Spring Training and is said to be eyeing a return to the Majors as early as June 18. The Orioles signed him to a minor league contract this offseason that came with a hefty $3MM base salary plus $5.05MM worth of incentives.
Santana, a two-time American League Cy Young Award winner, can now be sent on a minor league rehab assignment as he continues to build strength in his surgically repaired shoulder. The 35-year-old Legacy Agency client has a career 3.20 ERA with 8.8 K/9 and 2. BB/9 in 2025 2/3 innings for the Twins and Mets. Reports in early May indicated that his velocity had reached 89 mph, meaning he’s not far off from the 2009-10 speed at which he posted a combined 3.05 ERA in 365 2/3 innings.