Carlos Beltran is looking for a three- or four-year contract and will thus turn down the Cardinals' one-year, $14.1MM qualifying offer, Yahoo Sports' Tim Brown reports. Rejecting the qualifying offer will likely mean the end of Beltran's tenure in St. Louis as the Cards aren't likely to meet Beltran's demands when they have younger (and cheaper) outfield options like star prospect Oscar Taveras.
Beltran said during the summer that he hoped to play three or four more seasons, so it makes sense that he would look for a contract that would cover the home stretch of his career and capitalize on his strong performance in both the regular season and postseason. Though Beltran turns 37 next April, there is enough demand for his services that he could find more than two years. The Yankees, Red Sox, and Orioles have already been linked to Beltran this offseason and Brown reports that six teams have "varying degrees of interest" in the veteran slugger. Brown figures the Mets, Phillies and Rangers are also possible suitors, plus any other teams who miss out on Jacoby Ellsbury or Shin-Soo Choo.
As MLBTR's Steve Adams noted in his Free Agent Profile of Beltran, players of Beltran's age rarely score contracts of three years or more, and predicted that Beltran would sign a two-year, $30MM deal. Enough big-market teams are connected to Beltran that a larger deal could be possible, though the draft pick compensation attached to Beltran once he turns down the qualifying offer will also turn some clubs off.