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Carlos Play When Carlos Ready

Posted by nick_niesen on October 27th, 2010

Coming off a record setting postseason in 2004 where he hit 8 home runs, Beltran was rewarded by the Mets with the highest contract in franchise history?7 years for $119 million. For this tidy sum, Beltran turned in the most dismal season of his career with statistical lows in home runs (16), RBIs (78), runs scored (83), and stolen bases (17).

In fairness to Beltran, he started out playing very well in April 2005 until he injured his thigh. A gamer, Beltran tried to fight through the injury and played despite his speed game being nonexistent and much of his power sapped. And who can forget the horrifying collision Beltran had with Mike Cameron last August in San Diego? Beltran shocked most observers by coming back just five days later despite suffering from vertigo.

A quiet man by nature, Beltran was ill equipped to be a vocal clubhouse leader, but he is one who likes to lead by example. Despite playing through pain, Beltran picked up many doubters this off-season. His name, which previously topped many fantasy draft boards, was dropped down severalrankings. Local newspapers placed him on top of the "most overrated" lists.While it is obvious Beltran is not the player the nation saw in the 2004 postseason, he is a solid player who can contribute in many ways. His talents are most appreciated by watching him on a daily basis, where his defense and solid fundamentals are on display.

On opening day this year, New York fans shockingly booed Beltran after he stranded runners early in the game. Beltran, who really took one for the team playing injured last year, was noticeably stung by the fan's venom. In fact, a few days later when he hit a game-turning home run, he refused to go out for a curtain call to acknowledge the now adoring crowd. It wasn't until veteran Julio Franco coaxed him (more than once) that Beltran gave a lukewarm wave. Franco understood it is not a good idea to get on the bad side with of the fans. Clearly it is a war a player can't win, particularly in New York.

This year Beltran has again injured himself, suffering a hamstring pull early in the season. While the MRI seems to indicate the injury was far from severe, Beltran took his sweet time getting back on the field. He is no longer going to risk his reputation and health for the good of the team since it went clearly unappreciated last year.

Rest assured, Beltran will most likely produce solid numbers as he regains his health, but as he probably learned from Ricky Henderson, from now on Carlos play when Carlos ready.

MLB Baseball Player and Game Propositions @ http://www.WagerWeb.com

Also See: New York, Last Year, Home Runs, Days Later, His, Beltran, Most

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