Wow, he looked so young in that picture lol. Carlos Beltran was signed in 2005 as one of Omar Minaya’s big “splashes” of that off season. He along with Pedro Martinez were signed to bring legitimacy to a franchise that had been losing it since their appearance in the 2000 world series. Carlos immediately got off to a bad start with the fans with his baseball philosophy and his injuries. He would continue his battle against the boo birds until his buddy Carlos Delgado joined the team and pretty much pushed him out of the dugout to acknowledge the fans. His 2006 season was nothing short of ridiculous. He finished the 2006 regular season with a .275 BA, 41 HOME RUNS and 116 RBI’s. Granted, what he will most be remembered for is how the Mets 2006 season ended(which is not fair…even watching the replays today, I dont see how anyone could really have hit that pitch). Beltran would put up solid offensive numbers in 2007 and 2008 before all hell broke loose in 2009. The injury bug got him bad during 2009 and 2010, most of it got played out in a media war between Scott Boras and the Mets. Beltran had a renaissance year to this point in 2011, which im sure could be mostly attributed to being healthy again.
Alot of people just never warmed up to Beltran. Some felt he was a soft player who never really played the game hard, others felt he should have hit 500 home runs in a season. Many questioned Beltrans leadership abilities and pointed to his quietness as the “smoking gun”. Honestly, I will probably never know where the hell this crap came from. All I’ve heard from media outlets and the like is how much Beltran IS a leader and has helped his team mates with everything from Shane Victorino’s hypocrisy laden attack on Jose Reyes’ celebrations to Angel Pagan’s journey as a center fielder. Hell, the media was anticipating a field day about Beltran moving to right and that highly explosive situation was resolved without any issues or drama. Is he the loudest guy in the clubhouse, absolutely not but Beltran always went out there(with whatever percentage he was feeling) and gave pitchers hell. Let there be no doubt that Beltran is one of the best CF(and arguably the best CF) to ever don the Mets uniform. I have never seen some one so effective in the outfield and make it look so effortless. Carlos seemed to run in slow motion and yet always got to the ball. The Carlos Beltran era is closed and with it, a big part of the Omar Minaya era goes along with it. I thank you Beltran for making me super late to work after that night in 2006 when you hit a walk off home run to win it in the 16th…it was worth it.