The market for Carlos Beltran will become much more interesting if the Mets are willing to pay most or all of the outfielder's remaining salary in a deal, as ESPN.com's Buster Olney (via Twitter) and Joel Sherman of the New York Post write. Within Sherman's column, an AL assistant GM points out that not many teams can afford to take on $6MM at this point, meaning the Mets have a decision to make: "Do they want salary relief or do they want to open up the field of interested teams by eating a lot of dollars, and get a better return?" Here are today's other Beltran rumors, with any new updates added to the top of the page throughout the day....
- Andrew Baggarly of the San Jose Mercury News says that it's bad news for the Giants if the Mets are open to paying Beltran's price tag, since San Francisco would rather absorb salary and give up lesser prospects.
- According to executives polled by Sherman, only the Giants and Tigers could afford to take on all of Beltran's remaining salary, among potentially interested clubs. If the Mets paid most or all of the cost, teams like the Indians, Diamondbacks, Pirates, Red Sox, Phillies, and Braves would all be in play.
- Beltran is on the Angels' radar as well, according to Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe.
- One Mets official told Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports that trading Beltran within the NL East isn't out of the question, saying it "would be a factor, but not prohibitive." In Sherman's piece, however, one AL exec questions whether the Wilpons would allow the team to deal Beltran to the Phillies or Braves, even if Sandy Alderson is willing to do so.
- New York would probably have to gain about five games on Atlanta by July 31st to make keeping Beltran a viable option, says Newsday's Ken Davidoff.