One Carlos or Two in 2010?
Carlos Beltran recently told reporters that he’d like to see Carlos Delgado return to the Mets in 2010.
At a Harlem RBI event, Beltran said:
“Before I came to New York, I was at (Delgado’s) house (in Puerto Rico). I was talking to him. He’s planning to play winter ball, in Puerto Rico. He wants to show that he’s going to be back. Honestly, I would love to (have Mets bring him back). At the same time, that depends on the team, what kind of direction they’re going to take, what kind of player they’re planning to play at first base. But Delgado’s a guy, if he’s healthy, you’re going to get a lot of contribution – 30 home runs, 100 RBI. You’re going to get that from Delgado. He’s one of the guys – it’s safe to invest the money because he (takes) care of himself.”
We’ll excuse Beltran from that last odd comment, since we know it’s not safe to invest in a 37-going-on-38 year-old who has had chronic hip problems for the past three years.
There is no question that when Delgado is healthy — and hitting — the Mets have their best chance of winning. His presence in the lineup immediately raises the levels of those around him, and Beltran in particular. But, we don’t know if he’s going to be healthy, and we don’t know if he’s going to hit.
Maybe more importantly, Mets fans are clamoring for change. The ones who weren’t screaming to clean house after consecutive late-season collapses have jumped on that bandwagon after 2009’s full-season disaster. That said, Delgado has been a mainstay, a “core” member, and therefore one of the carriers of the disappointment of the past three years.
If we had a crystal ball that told us Delgado would be the monster he once was, and hit 35-40 HR, drive in 120+, and post a .375+ OBP, it’s a no-brainer to bring him back. But if the best he can do is something closer to an average of what he did in 2007-2008 — meaning, about 25-30 HR / 95 RBI / .340 OBP — is that enough for you, as a Mets fan, to warrant his return? Or do you think it’s time to “turn the page” and bring in a new, fresh face to the middle of the lineup?