While an overflow crowd at Chez CSTB is enjoying a mound duel between future Hall of Famers Tim Redding and Koji Uehara, there’s still some lingering ill-will in the visitors’ clubhouse over recent comments made by their former pitching guru.

Rick Peterson opined on ESPN 1050 that Johan Santana’s shockingly poor showing on Sunday in the Bronx was a performance under duress, a suggestion the Mets starter took great exception to, as the Daily News’ Adam Rubin explained earlier today.

“How does he know that my knee hurts?” Santana rhetorically asked. “That’s the question that I have. You guys tell me how the heck did he find that out….Not even the trainer knows. Not even me. I didn’t know my knee hurts. Just put it that way.

“We got along pretty good,” Santana continued about his relationship with Peterson, “but the reality is he’s not here. I’m the one who feels my body better than anybody, and my knee doesn’t hurt. I don’t know where he got that one from. I’m being honest and realistic: My knee is the last issue here. We took care of that last year (with Oct.1 surgery to repair a torn meniscus in his left knee), and it has nothing to do with what’s going on right now.”

Pitching coach Dan Warthen speculated Sunday that Santana unwittingly changed the grip on his fastball because of a blister and split nail on the ace’s left middle finger, both of which have since healed. The ace said that is possibly causing his ball to cut, but he’s not conscious of an altered grip.

“If I’m doing it, I’m doing it,” Santana said. “But I don’t think about it when I’m pitching.”

In somewhat less contentious news, It’s Mets For Me reports there’s a gathering of displaced Mets fans planned for this Saturday at the Santa Monica branch of the venerable Barney’s Beanery (EDITOR’S NOTE : Beware the Huevos Rancheros).  Not only am I certain this baseball brunch will be a far more diverse collection of quality invididuals than say, this dude’s-day-out, but you might even get to hang with Giuseppe Franco.