With Beltran turning down the Cardinals offer, it shows that Beltran and the Cardinals will part ways after two seasons and coming up just short in the 2013 World Series last month against the Boston Red Sox, but the 37-year-old is one of the top free agents on the market and has potential suitors.
Along with the Red Sox and Baltimore Orioles, the New York Yankees have interest in the outfielder, but more importantly, Beltran has major interest in playing in the Bronx, which dates all the way back to the offseason of 2005, where he was willing to take a $19 million discount to play for the Yankees, but the Yankees turned down Beltran in order to sign starting pitchers like Randy Johnson, Carl Pavano and Jaret Wright; which lead to Beltran signing with the New York Mets on a seven-year, $119 million deal.
In his six-plus seasons with the Mets, Beltran was a fine player and one of the more clutch hitters on the team, but was eventually traded in his seventh and final season with the Mets to the San Francisco Giants before hitting free agency again. That winter, there was some speculation on Beltran going to New York, but the Yankees decided to stick with Nick Swisher for another season and Beltran signed a two-year, $26 million deal with the Cardinals.
According to Tim Brown of Yahoo Sports, Beltran is looking for a three-four year deal in free agency and with the Yankees potentially losing Curtis Granderson to free agency in hopes of a multi-year deal on the market, the idea of Beltran in the Bronx is starting to make a lot of sense.
"He will not accept the one-year, $14.1-million qualifying offer from the Cardinals. Therefore, his return to St. Louis is unlikely. As Cardinals general manager John Mozeliak told reporters shortly after the World Series, "We never want to close doors. Reality is, when you look at the depth, trying to find ample playing time, I’m not sure how happy he will be." The Cardinals are moving on. So, too, is Beltran. The New York Yankees, who are expected to lose Curtis Granderson, and the Boston Red Sox, who apparently will lose Ellsbury, are eager to have him. Beltran had a reasonable-enough experience over nearly seven seasons with the Mets to consider a return to New York, this time in the Bronx."
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