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Adrian Beltre

Adrian Beltre

wikipedia

Adrian Beltre Player Bio

Position(s):
3B, SS, DH, 2B
Born:
April 7, 1979
Bats:
Right
Throws:
Right
Height:
5' 11"
Weight:
220 lbs
Major League Debut:
6-24-1998 with LAN
Allstar Selections:
2004 SS, 2007 GG, 2008 GG, 2010 SS

Adrián Beltré Pérez (born April 7, 1979 in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic) is a Major League Baseball third baseman for the Texas Rangers. He has played for the Los Angeles Dodgers (1998–2004), the Seattle Mariners (2005–2009), and the Boston Red Sox (2010). He bats and throws right-handed.

Professional career

Los Angeles Dodgers

Adrian Beltre with the Los Angeles DodgersHe was signed out of the Dominican Republic by the Los Angeles Dodgers in 1994. Beltré attended Liceo Maximo Gomez High School, where he developed into one of the school’s top players. In 1994, while working out at Campo Las Palmas, the Los Angeles Dodgers facility, he was spotted by scouts Ralph Avila and Pablo Peguero. Though only 15 and weighing just 130 pounds, he had a lightning-quick swing and electric throwing arm. On the insistence of Avila and Peguero, the Dodgers signed Beltré in July. He received a $23,000 bonus. When it was revealed that Beltré had signed his initial contract at the age of 15, commissioner Bud Selig suspended the Dodgers' scouting operations in the Dominican Republic for a year, because signing a player at that age was prevented under MLB rules.[1]

After being called up to the majors from the then Dodgers Double-A affiliate San Antonio Missions, Beltré made his major league debut on June 24, starting at third base in the first game of an interleague series against the Anaheim Angels. During his first at-bat, Beltré smashed a two-out RBI double off Angels starter Chuck Finley into left field to score Paul Konerko from second base to tie the game. He would hit his first home run six days later against Texas Rangers starter Rick Helling. At the end of the 1998 season, Beltré would finish with 13 errors at third base while batting .215 with seven home runs.

The Dodgers saw Beltré develop into a consistent and durable young star during his time with the team, as he hit .265 while hitting 18 homers a year (on average). From 1999 through 2003, Beltré also started 710 games at third base (out of 810 games played) averaging a .948 fielding percentage.

Seattle Mariners

Beltré was signed by the Seattle Mariners as a free agent before the 2005 season to a five-year, $64 million deal. Regressing to his pre-2004 form, he batted just .255 with 19 home runs and 87 RBI. Manager Mike Hargrove did not give up hope on Beltré, saying, "I think it's a season that, personally, he's disappointed in. I think it was a year that he will improve on the longer he's here and the longer he's in the American League."

Adrian Beltre Swings for the Seattle Mariners2006 was, likewise, a disappointment for Beltré and led some to suspect that he had used steroids in his contract year of 2004, or at least had ramped up his production in order to be considered for a heftier contract.[2] Beltré, in an interview for the Seattle Times, denied his dropoff in 2006 to have anything to do with steroids.[3] After batting .167 through April 10, Ted Miller of the Seattle Post-Intelligencer suggested that Beltré may become one of the Mariners' greatest busts.[4] By June 5, 2006, Beltré's batting average was slowly improving, from .109 on April 16 to .236 at that time. After hitting his first home run in April, and his second later that month, Beltré improved his hitting, getting more hits in ballgames, most notably doubles. He also hit two home runs in the first five days of June, good signs for Beltré as well as the Mariners.

On July 23, 2006, against the Boston Red Sox, Beltré hit an inside-the-park home run, the first one ever in Safeco Field history.

Though it wasn't a great season for Beltré, it was his best as a Mariner. He hit .276, had 26 home runs, and had 99 RBI. He also had a career high 41 doubles. He also was honored with a Fielding Bible Award for being the top MLB defensive third baseman during the year.[5]

The 2007 season wasn't one of Beltré's better defensive years statistically.[6] In 2007, he tied with Brandon Inge for the AL lead in errors by a third baseman, with 18, but Beltré ranked second in the league in assists, total chances, and range factor. He also had the lowest fielding percentage of all third basemen in the league, .958.[7] Beltré was awarded the Gold Glove award.

On September 1, 2008, Beltré hit for the cycle, becoming the 4th Seattle Mariner to do so. Arizona Diamondbacks shortstop Stephen Drew hit for the cycle that day as well, the first time two players had done so since 1920.[8] He won his second Fielding Bible Award for his defense that year.[9]

Beltré's decision not to wear a cup despite playing third base has been well-documented.[10] This really came back to hurt him on August 13, 2009, when he took a hard ground ball to the crotch.

Although he stayed in for the remainder of the 14 inning victory, he was put on the DL after suffering bleeding in one of his testicles.[11]

In his first game back from the DL from that injury, teammate Ken Griffey Jr. conspired with those responsible for the Safeco Field PA system to have Beltré's at-bat intro music be the waltz from The Nutcracker Suite.[12]

Beltré declared free agency on November 5, 2009.[13]

Boston Red Sox

Beltre with the Boston Red SoxOn January 7, 2010, Beltré signed a one-year, $9 million deal with the Boston Red Sox, which had a $5 million player option for 2011 with a $1 million buyout.[14]

Beltré led the Red Sox in batting average (.321) in 2010 and tied David Ortiz for the team lead in RBI (102). He finished the year with 189 hits in 589 at bats. He had 28 home runs and 84 runs scored. Beltré led the Majors in doubles, with 49 (also a career high). He also finished fourth in the AL in batting average, and was fifth in the AL in total bases (326) and slugging percentage (.553). He also had two stolen bases on the year, and finished ninth in the MVP voting.[15] Twice this season, both against the Tampa Bay Rays, Beltre fell to one knee while he was swinging, but he was still able to hit the ball over the outfield wall for a homerun.

Texas Rangers

On January 5, 2011, Beltré officially signed a six-year, $96 million contract with the Texas Rangers.

Personal

Beltré currently resides in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic and has homes in Pasadena, California and Bradbury, California with his family.

References

   1. Dayn Perry, "Do Players Perform Better in Contract Years?", Baseball Between the Numbers: Why Everything You Know About the Game is Wrong, (New York, NY, Basic Books and Baseball Prospectus, 2005), p. 200-01.
   2. Perry, p. 200.
   3. Finnigan, Bob (2006-06-02). "Beltre's power shortage prompts steroid suspicions". The Seattle Times. http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/html/sports/2003034196_mari02.html. Retrieved 2007-04-08.
   4. Miller, Ted (2006-04-10). "Beltre on brink of being a bust". SeattlePI.com. http://www.seattlepi.com/miller/266099_miller10.html. Retrieved 2007-04-08.
   5. "The 2006 Fielding Bible Awards". The Fielding Bible. Archived from the original on November 17, 2010. http://www.webcitation.org/5uJezKBUY. Retrieved November 17, 2010.
   6. Seattle's Suzuki and Beltre win Gold Gloves HeraldNet.com
   7. MLB Player Fielding Stats - As 1B - 2011 ESPN
   8. "Seattle's Adrian Beltre hits for cycle". Associated Press. 2008-09-02. http://ap.google.com/article/ALeqM5guKcabWYfa4ZOhnWeHUuGasgGA5gD92UAOLG0. Retrieved 2008-09-02.
   9. "The 2008 Awards". The Fielding Bible. Archived from the original on November 17, 2010. http://www.webcitation.org/5uJeZTJR2. Retrieved November 17, 2010.
  10. Street, Jim (2008-02-24). "Beltre Giving it Another Go for the Gold". mlb.com. http://mlb.mlb.com/news/article.jsp?ymd=20080224&content_id=2387105&vkey=spt2008news&fext=.jsp&c_id=sea&partnered=rss_sea. Retrieved 2008-02-24.
  11. "Adrian Beltre could be out for the season with injured testicle". Associated Press. 2009-08-13. http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2009/baseball/mlb/08/13/mariner.beltre.ap/index.html. Retrieved 2009-08-13. [dead link]
  12. Baker, Geoff (2009-09-01). "Los Angeles Angels at Seattle Mariners: 09/01 game thread". Seattle Times. http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/html/marinersblog/2009788119_los_angeles_angels_at_seattle_2.html. Retrieved 2009-09-01.
  13. Stone, Larry (2009-10-05). "Beltre, Sweeney file for free agency". Seattle Times. http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/html/thehotstoneleague/2010211878_beltre_sweeney_file_for_free_a.html. Retrieved 2009-10-05.
  14. Beltre Boston-bound with deal complete
  15. Hamilton wins MVP; Beltre finishes 9th ESPN

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Tagged:
Adrian Beltre, All Star, Boston Red Sox, Fielding Bible Award, Gold Glove, Los Angeles Dodgers, Seattle Mariners, Silver Slugger Award, Texas Rangers

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