It turns out the New York Mets weren’t waiting for the end of the World Series to speak with Washington Nationals first-base coach Tim Bogar, after all.
Just hours after it leaked out that the search was down to two names, multiple reports have confirmed that the Mets have hired Carlos Beltran as 22nd manager in franchise history.
Beltran has well-known ties with the Mets having spent six-plus seasons with the organization where he developed into one of the greatest offensive players in franchise history.
While the decision provides plenty of nostalgia for Mets fans, the merits of his managerial expertise will be a topic of conversation throughout the winter and beyond.
This will be Beltran’s first managing job in the majors after working as a special adviser with the crosstown-rival Yankees.
For a Mets team that has the pieces to be a contender in 2020, the original consensus amongst the baseball world was that an experienced manager would be needed to help steer the Mets to new heights.
The likes of Buck Showalter and Dusty Baker were still available while the Mets lost out on Joe Girardi last week to the division. But after almost a month of searching, it reportedly came down to Beltran and another inexperienced candidate in Eduardo Perez.
So why Beltran?
First off, he can handle everything that comes with New York, including the pressure, the media, and the Wilpon family.
While his Mets career ended on bad terms, the interview process saw a reconciliation between both parties. Stating that he only wanted to manage the Mets back on Oct. 13 confirms that. And that will win brownie points amongst the fan base.
A first-year manager also won’t provide as much pushback compared to a veteran name like Girardi when general manager Brodie Van Wagenen tries to suggest tweaks to the lineup.
Above all, however, is that the 42-year-old is considered one of the greatest students of the game seen during this generation.
The 2017 world-champion Astros sang the praises of Beltran, who helped develop some of Houston’s young stars, ranging from Jose Altuve to Carlos Correa, to Alex Bregman.
Not only is Beltran well-versed in analytics, but he has a knack of figuring out what the opposing pitcher is thinking — whether that’s through trends, picking up on tips, or stealing signs.
This kind of gifted offensive mind could be a match made in heaven for a Mets team that has numerous younger bats whose development will be imperative for team success. That will range from Pete Alonso trying to follow up a monster rookie season, to Amed Rosario feeding off a successful second half that saw him flirt with the .300 mark.
With that, however, Beltran and Van Wagenen must bring the right support staff to ensure a promising starting rotation meets expectations while building a legitimate bullpen.