NEW YORK -- Though the Mets have not yet made specific plans for the rest of Johan Santana's rehabilitation, they are relatively certain that no part of it will occur in the Majors.
Ideally, the Mets would like Santana to make another rehab start in the Minor Leagues, though they remain at the mercy of the postseason schedule. If Class A Savannah does not advance from its current playoff series, then Santana will have to fly to New York for a simulated game instead.
Though Class A St. Lucie is currently participating in the Florida State League championship and cannot play beyond this week, Savannah is tied, 1-1, in its best-of-three South Atlantic League series. If the Sand Gnats advance, Santana could start for them in the championship series next week.
"The game plan has been to get him in some competitive situations, where he finds out how he feels bouncing back from each and every outing," said Mets manager Terry Collins. "I'm hoping that we hear that his recovery is fine and his long-toss session is fine, and he can get ready for whatever his next time pitching will be."
If a Minor League game is not possible, Santana -- who threw three effective innings for Savannah on Friday -- will fly to New York for a simulated game at Citi Field.
It is growing increasingly unlikely that Santana will pitch in the Major Leagues this season, given the team's reluctance to expose him to a higher caliber of competition. Santana is not yet a year removed from major surgery to repair a torn anterior capsule in his left shoulder.
"The one thing we don't want to do is take a big step backward," Collins said. "I think the process that they've set down is going to work, and Johan's bought into it. Right now, we have no plans to see him here."