Sunday, December 13, 2015
Posted by el duque at 7:43 AM
But enough about Beltran's mobility. He's had a great career, he's a fine teammate, and I'm tired of blaming Yankee players for the hubris of Yankee management. No player deserves to be booed because he got old. The issue with Beltran has always been the wisdom of giving a guy a three-year deal just two years after rejecting him for a two-year contract. I'm still scratching my head over that one. I guess I always will.
It happened during a two-week shopping fiasco only a few Christmases ago. Robbie Cano was jogging off to Seattle, and something snapped in Hal Steinbrenner's fanny pack of a brain. He became a buying whirlwind. He signed Ellsbury to seven years, McCann to five, and Beltran to three - poof - before the eggnog had time to kick in. Hal wanted to paint over the loss of Robbie, and apparently, he thought he could buy another world championship - poof - as he sort of did in 2009.
Ever since, the Yankees have pleaded poverty every December, as surely as the Baby Jesus pops up in the manger scene in the town square. And now, we have one more year of Beltran to endure. One more long, sad year of injuries, eroding production and catchable balls dropping in front of him.
I remember the first month of Beltran as a Yankee. Just as he was catching his stride, he somersaulted over the wall, chasing a foul pop. He was never the same. Last season, he stank through May, then recovered. He hit one of the most important home runs of the year and ended up leading the Yankees in hitting, but that's really because nobody else could beat .270. He'll probably do less this year. And he is a DH playing the outfield. There will be a desire to boo the guy. But it's not his fault.
The music stopped, and we ended up with Beltran. Let's hope Yankee Stadium this season is not rocked by the sounds of fans booing a decent fellow.
What the front office needs to hear is silence.