The Citi Field fans were apparently correct when they gave Carlos Beltran a standing “O” of appreciation July 21 on get-away day.
He will not be a Met by the time they return home from their road trip on Monday, as the New York Post reported that the Mets have reached agreement on a deal with the San Francisco Giants for the 34-year-old right fielder. The Mets would not confirm the deal, saying that “while we have been engaged in discussions, we are not in a position to comment at this time.”
In addition to some much-needed cash, the Mets will receive a long-term pitching prospect. Zack Wheeler, a 21-year-old right-hander, is 7-5 with a 3.99 ERA in high-A San Jose. Scouts have tabbed him as a future front-of-rotation starter, which fits right into general manager Sandy Alderson’s rebuilding philosophy.
“We just need to continue to with what we have,” said Jose Reyes said before the Mets played at Cincinnati on Wednesday. “It’s not easy to replace that kind of player.”
Cleveland had offered to take on Beltran’s entire 2011 salary of $17 million. But Beltran refused that trade.
The Texas Rangers were also interested, but Beltran had little desire to go to the American League as a designated hitter.
Though the teams will have to wait out a mandatory 24-hour grace period to finalize the deal, Beltran has no intention of blocking it. He threw a going-away party for himself and his teammates after Tuesday’s 8-6 win in Cincinnati.
Beltran and his .289 average, 15 homers, 66 RBI, and .391 on-base percentage should be a great fit with the NL West leaders, whose .241 team batting average ranks 25th as they defend their World Series title.