Blog Entry

Rangers, Beltre close to a deal

Posted on: January 4, 2011 1:29 pm
Edited on: January 4, 2011 1:42 pm
 

Striking to tighten their grip on the AL West, the Rangers are close to a deal with free agent third baseman Adrian Beltre that will lock him up in Texas for the next six years, sources with knowledge of the talks confirmed to CBSSports.com.

The deal with Texas appears just about done, with one of the last remaining steps a physical examination for Beltre. Assuming no problems there, the Rangers are expected to announce what is believed to be a six-year, $96 million deal for Beltre, probably later this week.

As second choices go, there are far worse.

Though Texas swung and missed at this winter's free agent plum, Cliff Lee, the Rangers still will accomplish part of their winter goal of strengthening their pitching staff simply by adding Beltre, 31, a two-time Gold Glove winner and recognized as one of the best defensive third basemen in the game.

Multiple reports out of Texas suggest that All-Star Michael Young, the incumbent third baseman, has agreed to shift to designated hitter to make room for Beltre. That is just another testament to as classy and as professional a player as there is in the game: This will be Young's fourth position change in the past decade.

He moved from shortstop to second base when the Rangers signed Alex Rodriguez, went back to shortstop after A-Rod was traded, then shifted over to third base to make room for then-rookie Elvis Andrus two summers ago.

Now, Young again will be displaced by a personnel move. However, anybody who has watched the Rangers, particularly in the postseason last year, would agree that Young struggled defensively at third base at times. In the World Series against San Francisco in particular, a handful of balls got by Young that cost the Rangers.

With Beltre at third, the infield defensive immediately will improve (and with Andrus at short, the Rangers will field as talented and entertaining a left side of the infield as there is in the game). And with Young at DH and perhaps spelling various infielders at times during the brutally hot Texas summer, the Rangers will retain their team leader, a guy who long ago became the heart and soul of the clubhouse.

Beltre, after going quiet with the bat in Seattle's huge Safeco Field during his time there, re-emerged offensively last summer in Boston. He hit .321 with 28 homers and 102 RBI. His 49 doubles led the league, while his .365 on-base percentage and .553 slugging percentage both were close to career highs for the 13-year veteran.

The move at the same time improves Texas -- even though last year's DH, Vladimir Guerrero, now is not expected back -- while striking another blow to the beleaguered Los Angeles Angels. Texas' chief AL West rivals also were trying to lure Beltre, who becomes the latest free agent to decline the Angels' money.

Los Angeles also took a strong run at Carl Crawford earlier this winter before he signed with Boston, and the Angels held talks with Lee before he signed with Philadelphia.

Comments

Since: Nov 7, 2006
Posted on: January 4, 2011 3:30 pm
 

Rangers, Beltre close to a deal

How is this a smart signing by the Rangers??  If the Yankees did this, everyone would be bashing them for paying a guy way too much money for one productive year.  Here's Beltre's last 6 years:

  YR    TM     G     AB   R     H   2B 3B 
HR  RBI BB  SO &nbs
p;  SB CS  AVG.  OBP  SLG   OPS
2005Sea1566036915436119873810831.25

5.303.413.7162006Sea156620881663942

58947118115.268.328.465.7932007Sea1

4959587164412269938104142.276.319.4

82.8012008Sea1435567414829125775090

82.266.327.457.7842009Sea1114495411

92708441974132.265.304.379.6832010B

os1545898418949228102408221.321.365

.553.918

How is this the stats of a player who is about to sign a 6yr $96 million deal at age 31???  His one good year in the last six was in his walk year, similar to 2004 and comes at a park where he can banged the ball off the wall all day long. 


GOOD LUCK RANGERS with this signing!!!



Since: May 17, 2008
Posted on: January 4, 2011 3:18 pm
 

Rangers, Beltre close to a deal

If the contract really is 6 years and $96million I am stunned.  Beltre is a very good defensive 3B and an above average hitter, but he's really had, as others have pointed out, only 2 really good offensive years (his last in LA and last season in Boston)and both of those were in contract years.  6 years to a guy who will be 37 or 38 at the end of the deal is a huge risk...I thought the rumored 5 year offers in the $64-$70million range were more appropriate for Beltre (or more like 4 years and $50million is what I would have expected), sounds like Texas way outbid itself for Beltre and likely overpaid by a substantial margin.



Since: Mar 9, 2007
Posted on: January 4, 2011 3:10 pm
 

Rangers, Beltre close to a deal

Don't do it Rangers! Or as a Yankees fan, please do it. Texas has a stellar lineup that has proven it can win already, why mess with that? Especially for all the money & years you guys will give to this total BUM. Beltre is all about the contract year, then turns into a slouch the second that check is signed.

If you guys are looking to get rid of Mike Young, I'd kick A-Rod to the curb for him. Young is a great ballplayer.



Since: Jul 31, 2007
Posted on: January 4, 2011 2:46 pm
 

Rangers, Beltre close to a deal

As a Ranger's fan I'm torn on this deal.  I don't think there is any question this is too long and too much money.  If this was a 3-5 year deal in the $10-12MM per range then I say it makes sense.  As long as the Rangers do what is proposed and move Young to DH/Utility then this could work out to improve the team.  No doubt the defense is better with Beltre than Young right now.  I think we get a slight plus overall in the lineup and a lot more flexibility with position players.  We get to see if Moreland can play 1B and still have Murphy to play left if the young CF's (Bourbon or Beltre) can't play every day (Hamilton in CF and Murphy in LF).

Where this falls apart is if someone decides we need to move Young due to his contract.  This is a player who has given his all for this team and shown class throughout his career.  I think this has done more in the clubhouse than ANYONE can ever quantify.  How many other everyday players/face of the franchise would make 4 position changes over a 10 year time frame ALL FOR THE GOOD OF THE TEAM? 



Since: Mar 18, 2009
Posted on: January 4, 2011 2:13 pm
 

Way Too Much Time and Money

If the rumour is true and Beltre has in fact signed a 6 year, $96 million contract with the Rangers, he will become the most overpaid player in professional baseball.  Historically, he has a good year about every 6-7 years, and always in contract years, so the Rangers should have waited another 6-7 years before even thinking about signing him.  Where will Michael Young play now (DH)?  Andrus is locked into SS and if Beltre is a Ranger, he will likely demand to play 3B?  Perhaps a Rangers fan can help me fill in the blanks, because I don't understand signing this guy for that long at that price.  After all, his propensity for mediocrity always follows the big pay-day.



Since: Dec 18, 2009
Posted on: January 4, 2011 2:11 pm
 

Rangers, Beltre close to a deal

Over paying clap clap, clap clap clap - over paying clap clap, clap clap clap.



Since: Feb 13, 2008
Posted on: January 4, 2011 2:09 pm
 

Rangers, Beltre close to a deal

Seems like way to much for a player that will be 37 at the end of this deal.  Especially when you look at his track record and how he already underperformed after signing a big contract once in his career.  His main good seasons have come in contract years.



Since: Aug 16, 2006
Posted on: January 4, 2011 2:07 pm
 

Rangers, Beltre close to a deal

     I dont care what any of my fellow "delusional" Angels fans come on here and say over the next few days.  We just missed out on our last and final opportunity to add a quality defender and above average hitter via free agency...AGAIN!  Some Angels fans that have been drinking way too much of that Anaheim Kool-aid believe Beltre is worthless, and they will say things like "this guy is old, hes a chump, and only plays in contract years"  I say, those are the arguments that fans of incompetent teams are FORCED to come up with every time our "lame duck" Angels and useless Gm Reagins whiff on another free agent.  Im done buying tickets to go watch a team that is not committed to winning, plain and simple.


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