Terry Collins said he was surprised Monday when Carlos Beltran showed up early and requested a meeting to tell him he was ready to move to rightfield. But really, Beltran laid the groundwork for that decision as soon as he arrived in camp with plenty of hints during that initial news conference. Beltran talked about protecting the knee and preserving his career, with an eye towards his playing days after he finishes this season with the Mets.
Still, Beltran was expected to at least try to play centerfield before officially making the switch, and he chose to bypass that step completely. Does that mean his knee is in worse shape than previously thought? Well, we already know it's a chronic issue -- worsening arthritis. It's just a matter of how well he can manage it as this point. Clearly Beltran believes that he moving to rightfield is part of that, but ultimately, Beltran will surely look to sign in the American League as a part-time DH for 2012 and beyond.
In other news, Beltran's replacement -- Angel Pagan -- homered in Monday's game against the Nationals, and also struggled with the bright sun. It was also interesting to note that Collins called Isringhausen a "frontrunner" to make the bullpen - if he stays healthy for all of spring training. That's probably a big if.