Carlos Beltran, DH, Houston Astros, #15
Date of Birth: 4/24/1977
Birthplace: Manati, Puerto Rico
Current Salary: $16,000,000
Carlos Beltran, designated hitter for the Houston Astros, began his professional baseball career in 1995 when the Kansas City Royals drafted him. He played in the minor leagues until September, 1998 when he was called up to the majors. Beltran started the 1999 season in the choice leadoff batter position and playing center field. He played so well in his first year in the majors that he was named the American League Rookie of the Year. Beltran ended the 1999 season with a .293 batting average with 22 home runs, 108 RBIs and 27 stolen bases.
The 2000 season was a down one for Beltran as he struggled with injuries and batted only .247 in 98 games. But he came back strong in 2001, with a .306 batting average with 24 home runs and 101 RBIs. Beltran continued playing well for the next two seasons, but in June, 2004, Kansas City traded him to the Houston Astros.
Beltran became a free agent at the end of a hot 2004 postseason and he was able to negotiate a seven year contract with the Mets, valued at $119 million. Unfortunately for Beltran and the Mets, he had an injury-plagued 2005 season and he ended with low numbers, including a .266 batting average.
Beltran's 2006 season was much better and he stayed healthy most of the year. He won a Silver Slugger award for hitting 41 home runs and scoring 127 runs for the season. He also received a Gold Glove for fielding that resulted in 13 assists and 6 double plays, with only 2 errors. He again won Gold Gloves in 2007 and 2008 and a second Silver Slugger award in 2007.
On July 28, 2011, the Mets traded Beltran to the San Francisco Giants and he played with them through the 2011 season. In December, 2011, he signed a two year contract with the St. Louis Cardinals. Prior to joining the Cardinals as a right fielder, Beltran played most of his games in center field.
Beltran became a free agent after the 2013 World Series and he signed a three year, $45 million contract with the New York Yankees in December, 2013. He had injuries in 2014 that limited his playing time to 109 games. He finished the season with 94 hits, 23 doubles, 15 home runs, and a .233 batting average.
In 2015, Beltran batted .276 with 132 hits, 34 doubles, 19 home runs, and 67 RBIs in 133 games. As the Yankees' right fielder in 123 games, he made 166 putouts and 3 errors. He had one hit and two strikeouts in four at-bats in the postseason Wild Card game.
Beltran was traded to the Texas Rangers on August 1, 2016. He had a strong 2016 season, finishing with a .295 batting average, 163 hits, 33 doubles, 29 home runs, and 93 RBIs in 99 games with the Yankees and 52 games with the Rangers. In the postseason, he batted .182 with 2 hits in 11 at-bats in 3 games.
On December 3, 2016, Beltran agreed to return to the Astros on a one-year, $16 million contract.
Beltran's statistics in 19 seasons (1998-2016) in the major leagues include:
- 4 seasons with a batting average of .300 or better, with a high of .307 in 2003
- 11 seasons with over 150 hits, with a high of 194 in 1999
- 11 seasons with 30 or more doubles, with a high of 44 in 2002
- 12 seasons with over 20 home runs, with a high of 41 in 2006
- 8 seasons with 100 or more RBIs, with a high of 116 in 2006
- 7 seasons with over 20 stolen bases, with a high of 42 in 2004
Career batting statistics for Beltran through 2016 include:
- 2,457 games played
- 2,617 hits
- 536 doubles
- 421 home runs
- 1,536 RBIs
- 312 stolen bases
- 1,693 strikeouts to 1,051 walks
- .281 batting average
Career fielding statistics for Beltran as a center fielder through 2016 include:
- 1,572 games played
- 4,136 putouts
- 60 errors
- .986 fielding percentage
Career fielding statistics for Beltran as a right fielder through 2016 include:
- 630 games played
- 1,002 putouts
- 15 errors
- .986 fielding percentage
Beltran has established two charitable organizations, the Carlos Beltran Foundation and the Carlos Beltran Baseball Academy. The baseball academy aids youth in Puerto Rico both academically and athletically. Beltran has donated over four million dollars to the fund. Information on the academy is available at carlosbeltranacademy.org.
Beltran and his wife Jessica have two daughters.