In many fan's eyes back then, he seemed to be just another hot name for a brief stop here to eventually get a windfall of cash elsewhere.
Beltran got his storybook ending with the Astros' Game 7 victory over the Dodgers, giving him that long-awaited championship that had eluded him for the better part of two decades. As for now, though, he's retiring a champion.
"As a family, we're looking forward to spending time together, traveling, enjoying ourselves and doing things with our kids", Beltran said.
On the same day Carlos Beltran announced that he's finished as a player, he told MLB.com in his first interview after announcing his retirement that he's open to managing - and it just so happens that one of his former teams, the Yankees, has an opening.
Beltran posted a stunningly-amazing piece on the Player's Tribune today where he said that the talented and effervescent Chi Chi Rodriguez gave him his best career advice.
"I had always dreamed about winning a championship, and I chased every opportunity to do so in my career", Beltran wrote in his essay, titled "Muchas Gracias, Beisbol". Capping his 20-year career with a World Series ring. The 40-year-old Montreal native will report to Braves chairman and CEO Terry McGuirk, who also announced that John Hart is moving into a new role as a senior advisor. It was close but no cigar. Every managerial candidate says they have the ability to connect with players on that level, to coerce the best from them in a sport dominated by failure, but Beltran already has proved himself in that area. Being able to win was a great feeling, especially with a great group of guys. Then came the latter years, when he was productive and professional and uncharacteristically unremarkable as a hired gun for various playoff teams.
He finished with 435 home runs in his career while accumulating 2,725 hits. "Very few people get to experience that in general but to have that be his lasting memory, he's so worthy of it by the type of teammate he was and the type of person he is", Astros manager A.J. Hinch said. He remained productive even late in his career, making the All-Star team with the Yankees in 2016.
He said "I mean there's a lot of candidates out there, like I said I haven't made a decision, so if I make the decision to stay home then we can talk about it, but right now it's.I haven't made a decision yet".
There was a collective sigh of relief when the Cardinals signed Carlos Beltran prior to the 2012 season; partly because he'd hopefully fill a gap left in Albert Pujols' wake, but mainly because the guy couldn't hurt us anymore. What will answer the question is that swing, and the image of him striding through center field to chase down a flare or a ball in the gap.