8:13pm: Beltran will not receive any of the approximately $3MM owed to him over the course of his three-year deal with the Mets, the New York Post’s Ken Davidoff reports. The team has instead made a $200K donation to Beltran’s charitable foundation.
12:25pm: The Mets have formally announced Beltran’s ousting. COO Jeff Wilpon and general manager Brodie Van Wagenen issued the following statement:
We met with Carlos last night and again this morning and agreed to mutually part ways. This was not an easy decision. Considering the circumstances, it became clear to all parties that it was not in anyone’s best interest for Carlos to move forward as Manager of the New York Mets. We believe that Carlos was honest and forthcoming with us. We are confident that this will not be the final chapter in his baseball career. We remain excited about the talent on this team and are committed to reaching our goals of winning now and in the future.
12:07pm: Carlos Beltran’s time as manager of the Mets will apparently come to a close before he even suits up for a game. Yahoo’s Tim Brown reports (via Twitter) that Beltran has informed the Mets he feels it is best if he steps down.
Beltran was named in commissioner Rob Manfred’s report on the findings of his investigation into the Astros’ sign-stealing scheme earlier this week. While Beltran was a player at the time and wasn’t expected to be disciplined by the league as a result, reports over the past 24 hours have indicated that the Mets have been mulling his future in light of his connection to the scandal.
Whether the decision truly rested with Beltran or whether the wording of the reports (and, presumably, the forthcoming announcement) was structured in a way to allow Beltran to save face to some extent isn’t known at this time. Regardless, his ousting as manager now means that every person listed in Manfred’s Astros report — Astros GM Jeff Luhnow, Astros manager A.J. Hinch, Red Sox manager Alex Cora (formerly Houston’s bench coach) and Beltran — have now lost their jobs in the wake of a scandal that has increasingly shaken Major League Baseball as a whole.
It’s worth emphasizing that The Athletic’s report that broke the Astros’ sign-stealing scandal wide open was published two weeks after Beltran was named Mets manager. As such, there’s no reason to believe that Beltran was asked about the scandal during the interview process — let alone any reason to believe that he was untruthful with the Mets during interviews. That said, Beltran did tell the New York Post’s Joel Sherman shortly after the scandal was brought to public light that he was “not aware of that camera,” denying any improper utilization of technology.
Two months later, Manfred’s report indicated the following: “Approximately two months into the 2017 season, a group of players, including Carlos Beltrán, discussed that the team could improve on decoding opposing teams’ signs and communicating the signs to the batter.”
The Mets, incredibly, are now the third team seeking a new manager in mid-January. They’ll likely interview a mix of internal and external candidates, and it’s worth noting that the club did interview bench coach Hensley Meulens and quality control coach Luis Rojas in its initial search following the firing of Mickey Callaway. While other clubs throughout the league might be less inclined to allow members of their coaching staff to interview now that Spring Training looms in the near future, ESPN analyst Eduardo Perez was also reported to be a leading candidate in New York’s most recent search. One would imagine that he could once again factor prominently into the club’s hunt for a skipper.