Carlos Beltran’s two-decade run as one of Major League Baseball’s most dynamic talents officially came to a close Monday when the nine-time All-Star outfielder announced he will retire.
Beltran, 40, will go out a champion: He hit 14 home runs for the Houston Astros this season before they went on to win their first World Series title.
Yet his final act – which was anticipated, but finally confirmed Monday in a posting on The Players’ Tribune – hardly sums up a career that will likely culminate in his induction to baseball’s Hall of Fame five years from now.
A native of Puerto Rico, Beltran belted 435 home runs, stole 312 bases and had a lifetime on base plus slugging of .835 – much of it while manning center field, for which he earned three Gold Glove awards.
He was the 1999 AL Rookie of the Year for the Kansas City Royals, and led both the Astros (in his first go-round) and New York Mets to within one game of pennants in 2004 and 2006, respectively.
Beltran did not reach the World Series until 2013 with the St. Louis Cardinals, who lost in six games to the Boston Red Sox. He also played three seasons with the New York Yankees and partial seasons with the San Francisco Giants and Texas Rangers following midseason trades.