Per Mets' wishes, Santana doubtful for Classic

PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. -- General manager Sandy Alderson again hinted that Johan Santana is unlikely to pitch in the World Baseball Classic, despite Santana's desire to represent his native Venezuela.

"It's a complicated situation, just because of his injury and the fact that he did not pitch at the end of last season," Alderson said. "Ultimately, he needs our permission to play, and what we're going to do is take a look at it over the next few days."

Because Santana finished last season on the disabled list, the World Baseball Classic would need to insure the $31 million remaining on his contract for him to gain eligibility. That in itself is unlikely, and even if it comes to pass, the Mets could still ask Santana not to play. The left-hander has said that he would respect those wishes.

"We're very concerned that he'd be ready to go and healthy for us," Alderson said. "There are reasons why players in his situation at the end of a previous season typically don't play in the WBC. So we'll have to take a hard look at it."