The Mets have come to contract terms with Carlos Beltran. Beltran will take a physical today and is expected to be intorduced at a press conference tomorrow (Tuesday). This is fantastic news and finally shows a commitment on the part of the Wilpons.
The developments that led to the signing were interesting. Beltran turned down the Astros offer based strictly on the fact that they would not give him a no trade clause. Aparently he felt that if Houston gave Andy Pettitte a no trade clause last year when Pettitte signed with an iffy elbow then he (Beltran) should certainly get one. Rumor has it that Beltran then went to the Yankees and offered his services at a “discount” of just under $100 million for 7 years. George Steinbrenner turned him down citing the luxury tax on that would ammount to $40 million over the life of the contract. I guess the Boss does have limits. Anyway, the Mets were the next stop and they were willing to give $119 million and a no trade clause.
The addition of Beltran gives the Mets a solid bat on the way up in his career. This is a great thing but this is also the company line. I’m always one who looks back while looking forward and I see something that alarms me. If you compare Beltran’s stats from last year to those of Bobby Bonilla the year before he joined the Mets you’ll see some similarities. Does that mean that he’ll go south like Bonilla did after joining the Mets? No. It’s just something to keep in mind.
The other thing that bothers me is that the last few years the Mets have turned away Alex Rodriguez and Vladimir Guerrero. Regardless of money ARod and Vlad were sure things where, as good as Beltran is, I can’t help but that those guys were much better equiped and even more talented than Beltran hence making them more ideal players to help bring the franchise to back to respectability. The Wilpon’s clearly should have opened up to them the way they opened up to Beltran. Beltran’s got a great agent and PR machine around him. I just hope he lives up to the hype and can take the heat in New York when he hits his first slump.
Anyway, Omar Minaya has said that the signing of Beltran does not preclude the possibility of signing Carlos Delgado as well. How deep the Wilpons pockets really are this winter will determine what happens there.