Sports

Mets fans cheer Carlos Beltran in first visit since firing

Carlos Beltran returned to Citi Field on Thursday for the first time since he was briefly the manager of the Mets.

The nine-time All-Star, who played for both the Mets and Yankees in his 20 MLB seasons, was on hand to celebrate the life of Roberto Clemente, a fellow Puerto Rico native, and to join other Clemente Award winners in packaging food for those in need in New York City.

Beltran did not especially want to look back to the less than three months he was in charge of the Mets, which did not entail one game managed.

“It’s not weird at all. I was invited to participate, so I’m here,” Beltran told The Post about being back at Citi Field. “There’s nothing to reflect [on]. I didn’t really do much that year. What happened, happened. In life, you have to move on.”

Carlos Delgado and Carlos Beltran, right, joke around before the start of a game on Roberto Clemente Day.
Carlos Delgado and Carlos Beltran, right, joke around before the start of a game on Roberto Clemente Day.
Corey Sipkin/New York Post

When Beltran was hired on Nov. 1, 2019, to replace Mickey Callaway, he was a popular addition, a potential Hall of Famer who had spent seven seasons with the Mets.

By the following January, Beltran had been implicated in the Astros’ cheating scheme in which Houston used a camera system to steal signs notably during the run to the 2017 World Series. Beltran, a 20-year pro, was found to be a ringleader in the plot, which tarnished his reputation, perhaps hurt his Cooperstown bid and cost him his Mets job before it had truly started.

On Jan. 16, 2020, Beltran announced he was stepping down as Mets manager. He was eventually replaced by Luis Rojas.

Beltran has pointed out in the past that he was the only player among the Astros to be truly disciplined.

“I feel like MLB made a decision what they feel they needed to do about the situation,” Beltran said Thursday before the Mets hosted the Pirates. “In my case, I have talked about it. I’m moving forward. For me, there’s no need to talk about this situation anymore.”

A few years later, Beltran has dipped his toes back into MLB as a broadcaster with YES Network. He said he enjoys the gig because it allows him to be around clubhouses and baseball diamonds again.

“I feel like being able to do the broadcasting with the Yankees has allowed me to get back onto the field, share information with the players, being around the guys. That’s something that I really like,” said Beltran, who could use the role to attempt to get back into a coaching job.

He said he did not know if a managing job would emerge, but added, “I’m enjoying what I’m doing.”

When Beltran’s name was announced before the game, along with the other past winners of the Clemente Award — an honor given to the player “who best represents the game of Baseball through extraordinary character, community involvement, philanthropy and positive contributions, both on and off the field” — Mets fans cheered.

Leave a Comment