The New York Mets have placed starting pitcher Johan Santana on the 15-day disabled list with a sprained right ankle. Santana, the Mets' ace who missed the entire 2011 season recovering from shoulder surgery, pitched the first no-hitter in franchise history on June 1, throwing 134 pitches, well beyond his prescribed pitch count. He hasn't been the same pitcher since, with a 6.54 ERA and 11 homers allowed in 42 2/3 innings.
The ankle injury stems from a play on July 6 when the Cubs' Reed Johnson stepped on Santana's foot on a play at first. Mets general manager Sandy Alderson says Santana won't be available until August 5. The Mets, who have been a pleasant surprise this year, have lost seven of eight games and are at risk of falling out of contention in the National League.