Mets Welcome Carlos Beltran As The New Manager

By Rich Mancuso/ Sports Editor

Carlos Beltran is home. New York City has always been since his playing days for six-and-a-hald years as a New York Met. Now he is the 22nd manager in team history and the first Latino coach or manager to guide a New York sports team.

It was all made official Monday morning at Citi Field. Beltran was overwhelmed and he should be. The Mets’ hierarchy were impressed with the first interview in the extensive search to succeed Mickey Callway.

“It was Carlos’ strengths that won the day,” GM Brodie Van Wagenen said.

And that strength continues. He put on the Number 15 jersey.  Carlos Beltran was officially welcomed home. He wanted this job more than any other and made sure by not pursuing other vcacancies of teams that were in search for a manager.

This was a no brainer, even if Carlos Beltran is a first time manager. He is a players’ chocie as well and that was another component that caught the eyes of owners Jeff and Fred Wilpon. It also got to Omar Minaya, an assistant to Van Wagenen, the GM of the Mets who signed Beltran at the time to a record seven-year $119 million contract as a free agent after the 2004 season.

“I feel that I have more credibility to motivate the players and be there for them,” Beltran said.

Not that Mickey Calllaway wasn’t the proiper manager. This is business and Van Wagenen was looking to put his own manager in place as Callaway was hired by porevious GM Sandy Alderson.

Beltran said, his best ties in baseball were in New York. He kept his residence in the New York area and the past two years was an adviser to Yankees GM Brian Cashman.

With the Yankees, the kowledge got a step better. Player development and learning on the job that got him to the level now as a manager in New York. 

He dealt with the media as he always did as the player. Sincerity and to the point were never an issue with Carlos Beltran the ballplayer.

And there are those  roots to the Latino comnmuniy. Though the Mets fan base will soon forgive him for making the last out in the 2006 NLCS against the Cardinals at Shea Stadium, a night the Mets failed to advance to the World Series  

They will soon forgive Beltran, because .fans always forgive.in a matter of time.  They have short memories. 

And this is Carlos Beltran who said about his new role and support that he has received around baseball,  “It really showed me that I did good things in baseball.”

Beltran mentioned his Latino heritage. He said it was important to keep the connections within the Latino community. He stressed the significance of youth and his baseball academy in Puerto Rico that contiues to grow at a rapid base.

And that will continue in  New York with this three year deal with an option for a fouth. There isa lot to be done including assembling a coaching staff and there shoudl be no issues co-existing with his GM that has the manager of his choice.

But it all comes down to this. Carlos Beltran is home where he belongs.

“I just can’t wait to rewrite our story being thre manager of the New York Mets,” Beltran said. “I feel like I was coming to a place where I didn’t have to sell anything. They knew what kind of person I am. They knew what I can bring to the table.”

And at the table the Mets higher ups made the right decision. The Carlos Beltran story as the next manager for the Mets begins down in Port St. Lucie in February.


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