- The Washington Times - Wednesday, April 1, 2009

JUPITER, FLA. (AP) - Johan Santana pitched three innings in his final tuneup for opening day, allowing a pair of solo homers during the New York Mets’ 5-2 victory over the St. Louis Cardinals on Wednesday.

The Mets limited Santana to 36 pitches in his final spring training start. Home runs by Rick Ankiel and Chris Duncan were the only hits he allowed.

Elbow stiffness slowed Santana early in camp, limiting the two-time Cy Young Award winner to four starts this spring. He allowed seven earned runs and 12 hits in 17 2-3 innings, walking two.

The left-hander proclaimed himself ready to start the season opener Monday at Cincinnati.

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