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Johan Santana Baseball Cards

Alex Rodriguez Rookie
Born: March, 13th 1979
Drafted: 1999
by Florida Marlins
Lifetime ERA: 3.22

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Johan Santana

Major League Baseball pitcher Johan Santana was born Johan Alexander Santana Araque on 13 March, 1979 in Tovar, Venezuela. He is the second oldest child of four siblings. Johan’s father played semi-pro baseball part-time as a short stop while working full time as an engineer. Johan played center fielder at Liceo Jose Nucete Sardi High School. He was discovered by Houston Astros scout Andres Reiner in 1994. Santana had such a quick throw that he was trained as a pitcher even though he was a center fielder.

Johan Santana was the 1999 Tovar Merida Athlete of the Year and was also picked in the Rule 5 Draft that year by the Florida Marlins. His first Major League Baseball game was on 3 April, 2000 against the Tampa Bay Devil Rays. It wasn’t until a few months later, on 6 June, 2000, that he experienced his first Major League win. It was against his original signing team – the Houston Astros.

After a 6.49 in 86 innings that first season, Santana was sent to the minors by the Minnesota Twins in 2002 for two months to work on his change up. Johan also learned to throw a 91- 95 mph fastball. In the latter part of the 2004 baseball season, Johan Santana had a 13 - 0 record with 4 or less hits that he gave up in 10 consecutive sets. That performance hasn’t been matched by any pitcher since 1961.

Santana’s average in the 2004 season was 11.13 strikeouts in 9 innings. His 265 season strikeouts broke fellow Twin Bert Blyleven’s season record of 258 strikeouts. Johan won the American League Cy Young Award and had all 28 first place votes. In the 2005 season, the Minnesota Twins beat the Chicago White Sox when Johan Santana struck out 11 players. He finished 3rd in the Cy Young voting that season.

The 2006 baseball season saw some of Johan Santana’s greatest achievements. He won the 2006 Pitching Triple Crown. Santana also ranked high in many pitching categories such as winning percentages, earned run average, innings and strikeouts. He also began the Johan Santana Foundation in 2006 to help hospitals and provide baseball equipment for children in Venezuela.  

Santana’s 2007 season wasn’t as good as his past ones in many respects since he had 13 losses and 15 wins. Yet he still won a 2007 Golden Glove – his first. Two time Cy Young winner Johan Santana was also voted to play in the 2007 All-Star Game. Santana was traded to the New York Mets at the beginning of 2008. His first win as a Met in Shea Stadium was on 10 May, 2008. Johan Santana is married to Yasmile and they have two daughters – Jasmily and Jasmine.