The question isn’t whether Carlos Beltran can still hit, it’s whether or not he can stay healthy. For two seasons before 2011, Beltran struggled to play more than 81 games, but he managed to stay healthy enough to play in 142 games last year. The batting average and the power was there (.300 and 22 HR), but the same bothersome knee knocked him out for two weeks in August. That’s exactly the risk you take when drafting Beltran. Now in St. Louis, he will be asked to fill a major hole left by Albert Pujols, which might be the tallest task of the year.
Best case scenario: Corey Hart (MIL)Similar players: Nick Markakis (BAL), Adam Jones (BAL), Carlos Lee (HOU)Worst case scenario: Injuries keep him out for most of 2012
Power, lineup, OBP. Even without Pujols, the Cardinals will still have Matt Holliday and Lance Berkman protecting Beltran in the lineup. Couple that with Beltran’s .199 ISO and .384 OBP over the last three seasons, and he should post healthy numbers across the ...