Michael Baron, ContributorIn his column for the Philadelphia Daily News, David Murphy opines that both the Mets and the Phillies could end up in a bidding war to land OF Carlos Beltran this winter.
Still, Murphy believes Beltran could be a better fit for teams in better position to contend going forward.
“The feeling here is that there will be a team that feels better prepared to pay for the risk/reward ratio that Beltran offers,” Murphy writes. “Such a team would feature a lineup that can contend, even if its, new high-priced outfielder suffers a significant regression, and a payroll that can absorb such a hit, and, perhaps, the flexibility of giving said outfielder some at-bats as a designated hitter.”
Murphy says teams such as the Cardinals, Rangers, Tigers, Red Sox and possibly the Yankees could be good fits for Beltran.
Both the Mets and the Phillies have protected picks this winter, and considering it’s likely Beltran will receive a qualifying offer and both teams basically need more production in their outfields, Murphy’s theory makes some sense.
In the end, I really feel the odds are long Beltran will be a Met again. I hope I’m wrong and I’d be thrilled to see him back. But, I just don’t see it.
The fan in me wants to believe there’s a chance Beltran will come back. Watching him succeed in the postseason once again reminds me of so many positive moments during his tenure here. And, I want him to come back, and I hope he genuinely wants to be here and finish his career here. I’m not sure if it’s because I think he will make the Mets a better team, or because it’s a chance for him to be appreciated for his talents and the fantastic career he’s had (something I’m not sure a lot of Met fans feel), or a combination of the two.
As great as he is (and forgetting the weird manner the relationship between Beltran and the Mets ended), Beltran is going to be 37 next year and is declining. He isn’t a consistent defensive player anymore and those shortcomings could prove problematic on an everyday basis at Citi Field. That’s not meant to be a knock on Beltran – in his prime, he was one of the best outfielders I have ever seen. But, diminishment is a fact of a baseball player’s career. In the case of the Mets (or any National League team which considers Beltran), they have to seriously question whether or not paying between $13-15 million for a player who might be a better DH than all-around player is the right move for this phase of their transition.
Read more: Murphy, Philadelphia Daily News