Free-agent left-hander Johan Santana threw off a mound for the first time Friday since recovering from surgery to repair a re-tear of the anterior capsule muscle in his left shoulder.
Santana, winner of two Cy Young Awards, last pitched in 2012. He is attempting to come back.
"Just want to let you guys know that I started throwing off the mound this week, and I feel great!!! One step closer!!! Believe it!!!" Santana wrote on Twitter.
There were reports in December that he was close to signing a minor-league deal. Minnesota Twins general manager Terry Ryan expressed some interest but said he did not expect Santana to be ready to pitch until midseason.
Santana had the first surgery in 2010 and missed the 2011 season. He pitched 117 innings in 2012 before getting shut down. He had the second operation last April.
Santana is 139-78 with a 3.20 ERA with 1,988 strikeouts and 567 walks in 2025 2/3 innings over a 12-year career with the Twins and New York Mets.