SURPRISE, Ariz. -- Adrian Beltre saw Peyton Manning lead the Broncos to the Super Bowl title and then announce his retirement.Maybe that could happen to Beltre as well."That would be awesome," Beltre said.But he has a better scenario."How about winning three in a row," said the Rangers All-Star third baseman.
SURPRISE, Ariz. -- Adrian Beltre saw Peyton Manning lead the Broncos to the Super Bowl title and then announce his retirement.
Maybe that could happen to Beltre as well.
"That would be awesome," Beltre said.
But he has a better scenario.
"How about winning three in a row," said the Rangers All-Star third baseman. "If we could win three or four in a row, that would be nice."
So Beltre isn't exactly dead set on retiring if the Rangers win the World Series. But he has thought about it.
"I can't say I will, but you never know," Beltre said. "That would make it easier for me."
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Beltre will turn 37 in April and enters his 19th season in the Major Leagues. He has played in four All-Star Games and has four Gold Gloves for his defense. He has 413 home runs and 2,767 hits. In two more seasons, he could reach 3,000 hits, which would elevate an already impressive Hall of Fame resume.
He has done everything in baseball except one.
"Win the World Series," Beltre said. "That's going to make it easier for me to determine how long I'm going to play. If I won the World Series it would be easy just to go home any time I want."
He isn't ready to go home because he still enjoys the game. Beltre may be the Rangers elder statesman but he still plays with a smile on his face and a zeal that matches his buddy Elvis Andrus.
"I always try to enjoy whatever I do," Beltre said. "Once it gets old I go home. I don't think I'm ready for that yet. It's more fun for me because I know any day could be my last. I don't want to regret not enjoying what I do once I go home.
"That's why I can't say when I'm going to retire or not because if I'm still enjoying what I do and I'm still producing like I should and my body feels good, why not? If I'm not doing what I'm supposed to be doing and my body is not holding like I want it to, and I'm not enjoying the game, I'd go home."
Beltre was 19 when he made his Major League debut for the Dodgers in 1998 and has played in 2,567 games, second most among active players. Alex Rodriguez is the active leader with 2,719 games played and only Brooks Robinson all-time has played more games at third base.
"I know many players want to be in my situation and I've been fortunate enough to be playing for so long," Beltre said. "I don't take that for granted. I enjoy playing. I like to have fun, but at the same time I like the competition. In my mind the first thing is to win and I don't think that's going to change any time soon."
He will be a free agent after the season. The Rangers came into Spring Training with the desire to negotiate a contract extension with Beltre beyond 2016. But any discussions to this point have been kept quiet between the club and agent Scott Boras.
Beltre said he is not thinking about the extension.
"I'm just trying to get out of here healthy," Beltre said. "Working on my swing a little bit … make sure I have everything covered before I get out of here."
He was talking about Spring Training, not the game of baseball.
• Ian Desmond started in center field for the Rangers on Thursday night against the Brewers. He is expected to be the Rangers' Opening Day left fielder, but they want him to be prepared to play center as well.
• Rangers pitcher Colby Lewis pitched 3 1/3 innings in a Minor League game against the Padres. He allowed four earned runs on seven hits, a walk and three strikeouts. He threw 57 pitches.
• Rougned Odor, who is dealing with a strained oblique muscle on his right side, was 2-for-4 with a double in the Minor League games against the Padres. He had two at-bats in the Triple-A game and two in the Double-A game.
• Left-hander Victor Payano is starting for the Rangers on Friday against the Mariners in Peoria. Payano, 23, is not in big league camp, but was 4-4 with a 5.05 ERA in 15 starts and 14 relief appearances at Double-A Frisco last season. Anthony Ranaudo is also pitching against the Mariners.
• Derek Holland and Phil Klein are scheduled to pitch for the Rangers on Friday night against the Royals in San Antonio. The Rangers travel squad includes outfielder Delino DeShields and Drew Stubbs, and catcher Robinson Chirinos. But Beltre, Prince Fielder, Mitch Moreland, Andrus and Shin-Soo Choo remained in Arizona.
T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger and listen to his podcast.