Of the handful of Mets managerial candidates receiving call-back interviews, none can quite replicate the quirks of Carlos Beltrán's resume. Easily the most high-profile of the Mets’ inexperienced candidates, Beltrán played in Flushing from 2005-11 as part of a 20-year, Hall of Fame-caliber career. But he has no coaching experience at any level.
That hasn’t stopped those who know him well from lauding the qualities he could bring to the job.
“He’ll be an amazing manager,” said Astros shortstop Carlos Correa, who won a World Series with Beltrán in 2017. "He’s going to help [a] club so much like he helped here in this clubhouse. The atmosphere that he built and the chemistry in the clubhouse still lives on. We still treat each other like brothers, we still take care of business like we should, like professionals. … He’s going to be a game-changer if he gets that job, for sure.”
A year after Beltrán’s retirement as a player, the Yankees hired him into their front office as an advisor. He received rave reviews in that role, though questions remain how he would handle a clubhouse without any managerial experience -- particularly considering the Mets’ last manager, Mickey Callaway, had also never done the job at the time of his hiring.
Count Correa among those unmoved by such concerns.
“I met him when it was his last year playing baseball, but he was like another coach and part of the team at the same time,” the Astros shortstop said. “He was playing, but you felt like he was a coach. He showed us the way of playing this game the right way. He showed us how to study other pitchers, how to study the other teams. He's one of the smartest guys for sure that I’ve met playing this game.”
Clarity on Beltrán’s status should come soon. The Mets have already begun the process of calling back candidates for second interviews, according to sources, though the scope of their manager search remains wide and varied. In addition to Beltrán, the Mets’ second-round interviewees include Joe Girardi, Eduardo Pérez and Luis Rojas. The Athletic also reported that Tim Bogar is among the Mets’ call-backs.
Of that group, Girardi offers by far the most experience, but no guarantees he would even accept the Mets’ job. Girardi has already gone on a second interview with the Phillies, who appear more committed than the Mets to hiring an experienced manager. None of the Mets’ other known candidates have managed in Major League Baseball, though other candidates may still exist in a process the Mets have worked to keep as secretive as possible.