(Neil Miller / Sportday Wire)
Carlos Beltran, currently with the Yankees, spent a good portion of his illustrious career with the other New York baseball team, the Mets, whom he played for from 2005 to 2011.
On Wednesday at the Topps baseball card offices in lower Manhattan, Beltran spoke about the Mets’ run to the World Series last season.
“It was great, it was great to see a young group of guys, and especially very happy for (Manager) Terry Collins because, great man, when I had him as a manager, just a great manager,” said Beltran.
Beltran shed some light on what it was like when Collins was hired as Mets manager in 2011.
“When I first knew he was going to come to the Mets, you know, we hear a lot things about Terry Collins, about his previous experience when he managed the Astros and Anaheim. But when I first got him as a manager, he was the best manager I ever had in my career as a ballplayer.
“He communicates, he’s very intense, and that’s what you look for in a manager. Just very happy to see him coming through and being able to experience the opportunity to be in the World Series and, at the same time, happy for the other guys because, like Murphy, who put together an unbelievable run and David Wright, guys that I played with, Lucas Duda, Jonathon Niese, so it was good to see those guys experiencing that moment.”
On if he talked to any of them during the run, Beltran said, “No, no, I just watched the games.”
Beltran said of Collins’ decision to leave Matt Harvey in for the ninth inning of Game 5 of the World Series, which the Mets went on to lose, “In his mind, I felt that he wanted to take him out. But at the same time, Harvey was pitching such a good game and showing that he wanted that moment, so he basically, you know, went with what Harvey showed him.
“Later on, I don’t think it would happen. He’d say, ‘my friend, I’m going to give you a kiss if I have to, but I’m going to my closer right here…That’s the beauty of being a manager. Sometimes you just have to go with how you feel. Unfortunately, it was in the World Series,” said Beltran.
Beltran was traded at the deadline of the 2011 season to the San Francisco Giants for Zach Wheeler.