Skip to main content
Updated:
Original:

Pitcher Ervin Santana rejoins Twins after suspension, will start Sunday

Author:

Twins pitcher Ervin Santana rejoined the team Saturday after serving an 80-game suspension for using a performance-enhancing drug banned by Major League Baseball. Santana, a right-hander, is scheduled to start Sunday against the Royals in Kansas City, according to the Associated Press.

To make room for him on the roster, the Twins sent right-hander Alex Meyer to Rochester. Meyer had a 16.88 ERA in two relief appearances. According to 1500ESPN.com, starter Trevor May is being bumped to the bullpen to keep a five-man starting rotation.

The Twins signed Santana in the offseason to a four-year, $55 million contract to help bolster their starting pitching. It’s the largest contract the team has ever given to a free agent.

But Santana hasn't pitched a regular season game for the team; he was suspended in early April after testing positive for Stanozolol, a steroid that is popular among Olympic athletes. It's known to be much easier to detect during a drug screening.

Santana has maintained his stance that he unknowingly ingested the Stanozolol and would never purposefully use a performance-enhancing drug.

The Pioneer Press writes about what Santana had to say Saturday afternoon in Kansas City, including this clip when he talks about explaiing the situation to his children.

Santana was sent to Triple-A Rochester last month to tune up before joining the Twins. He pitched three games, going 3-0 with a 1.74 earned run average, according to the St. Paul Pioneer Press. In the last of those games on Tuesday he threw eight shutout innings with no walks.

“We can’t wait to get Ervin back,” Twins player Eduardo Nunez said, according to the Pioneer Press. “We’re fighting for first place, so we don’t care about what he’s done in the past. We need him to come here and do the job.”

"I know as well as anybody it’s good to get second chances," Twins manager Paul Molitor added, the Pioneer Press says. "I’m going to welcome him back. I hope everyone else does the same.”

Molitor and the entire team hope that Santana gives a boost to the starting rotation, since the team is in the thick of the playoff hunt.

So what can the Twins expect from Santana in the second half of the season?

Looking at his stats from the past five years, FOX Sports North predicts he'll be a solid starter, if not an ace - with above-average numbers.

His ERA was lower than 4.00 in four of those five years. Last season, with the Braves, Santana went 14-10 with a 3.95 ERA.

One other consequence of Santana's suspension is that if the Twins make the playoffs, he won't be eligible to pitch in the postseason, according to FOX Sports.

According to the Pioneer Press, Santana lost $6.64 million in salary, or 90 days’ pay, while he was suspended.

Next Up

Justin Jefferson

Vikings-49ers: 5 things you can count on

Sunday's matchup is a pivotal game in the NFC playoff picture.

Gopher Football

Watch: Gophers troll Badgers with 'Jump Around' after Saturday's win

First they took Paul Bunyan's Axe. Then they took their tradition.

Brandon Richart, missing person

Search underway for missing man in Anoka area

Brandon Richart was last seen Nov. 17.

U.S. Bank Stadium

5 teams win first state championships at Prep Bowl

A pair of records fell as the Prep Bowl lived up to the hype.

ashley Carlson

Remains of missing WI mom found in Pine County, MN

Ashley Miller-Carlson was 33 years old.

D'Angelo Russell

D'Lo's late takeover helps Timberwolves win double-OT thriller

Russell caught fire to help the Timberwolves get back to .500.

Gopher Football

Gophers suffocate Badgers, reclaim Paul Bunyan's Axe

Minnesota picked up its first home win over the Badgers since 2003.

Meeker County Sheriff's Office

Boy, 6, run over after falling off trailer in Meeker Co. tree farm accident

He was airlifted to Hennepin County Medical Center with internal injuries.

Target store

Target unveils deals for 2-day 'Cyber Monday' event

The promotion kicks off Sunday, November 28.

Screen Shot 2021-11-27 at 9.59.30 AM

Edina police warn of recent burglary trend targeting garages and vehicles

The Edina Police Department is increasing patrols in affected neighborhoods in response to the trend.

Related