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Johan Santana Injury: Mets' Ace Expected To Return Saturday

July 20, 2012; New York, NY, USA; New York Mets pitcher Johan Santana (57) throws a pitch during the second inning of a game against the Los Angeles Dodgers at Citi Field. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-US PRESSWIRE
July 20, 2012; New York, NY, USA; New York Mets pitcher Johan Santana (57) throws a pitch during the second inning of a game against the Los Angeles Dodgers at Citi Field. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-US PRESSWIRE

The New York Mets' West Coast trip wasn't kind to them but a bit of relief will come this weekend back home in Queens, where ace Johan Santana is expected to make his first start since going on the disable list, says ESPNNewYork.com's Adam Rubin.

Santana (6-7), who's recovering from a sprained ankle, made a rehab start with the Brooklyn Cyclones on Sunday, and tossed 38 pitches in three scoreless innings. The results was good enough for the Mets to give Santana the go-ahead to start against the Atlanta Braves. Pitcher Jeremy Hefner is expected to be pushed to the bullpen.

"I feel good," Santana said via the team after Sunday's appearance. "My body had a chance to recover. I really needed that. I threw all my pitches and commanded my fastball."

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