Mets manager Carlos Beltran predicts 'great year' for struggling reliever Edwin Diaz
Talk about a reclamation project. Transforming Edwin Diaz from one of the most maligned closers in Mets history, and there have been a lot of them, into a valuable contributor for the 2020 squad is a tall order. It is not one, however, that newly hired Mets manager Carlos Beltran is shying away from.
"I do believe it's going to be a great year for him," Beltran said after being named the team's manager. "He will be fixed."
In fact, the future first ballot Hall of Famer-turned manager is committed to making the Mets closer than fell into an abyss last year into a great player yet again.
It sounds simple if you listen to Beltran, but the thought of a first-time manager stepping in from day one and taking on a reclamation project seems quite daunting. The Mets finished 86-76 last year with a bevy of blown saves and late game leads.
Had the Amazin's blown half those leads, they could have easily been in the mid-90s; good enough for a wildcard spot and potentially meeting with the future World Series Champion Washington Nationals.
The Houston Astros sign-stealing scheme is capturing the attention of the country and while Beltran has been one of the former players on Houston's 2017 squad reportedly interviewed by MLB regarding the practice and his potential involvement, the following quote seems somewhat ironic given the news that came out shortly after Beltran's hiring.
"There were some things he was doing last year tipping wise, I also believe that coming from a small market team to a big market team in New York, there's adjustments you have to make. There's a process you have to go through. I do believe he's going to be better this year," Beltran said.
Clearly, Beltran has a keen eye for tipping pitches and the unspoken role of sign-stealing, but for the Mets and their fans they're hoping that their manager comes out of the Houston controversy unscathed and doesn't try to push the envelope while in New York to get the team in any hot water.