One of my favorite players on the Mets is without question Carlos Beltran. He has been an absolute stud in centerfield and yet I can’t help feeling the best is yet to come.
In 2006, when he hit 41 homeruns and drove in 116, I thought Beltran was about to enter a huge power spike that would continue for 4-5 years. However, in 2007 and 2008 his slugging percentage went from .594 to .525 to .500.
I think the nagging injuries had a lot to do with it and an off season with no surgeries and plenty of time to relax and get healthy will lead to another power breakout like we saw two seasons ago.
In 2008 his plate discipline and batting average was the highest in five seasons, and he only struck out 4 more times than he drew a walk. I believe most of those 40 doubles will translate into a few more homers as long as his legs and knees are healthy.
Beltran is a warrior, as evidenced by the 161 games he played last season. As he got healthier, he also got stronger. In the last month of the season, Beltran hit .344 with a .440 on-base percentage, and a Ruthian .645 slugging percentage. He also stole more bases in September (6) than any other month of the season.
Last September we watched the Carlos Beltran we saw in 2006, and the centerfielder who wowed us in 2004 when he split his season between Kansas City and Houston.
So does Carlos Beltran have a 30/30 season in him in 2009?
You better believe he does!
All the arrows are pointing in the right direction, and when Beltran is healthy, you can count on an MVP caliber season from the Mets’ Gold Glove centerfielder.