With a double to lead off the top of the second inning during Thursday afternoon’s game against the Athletics, Rangers third baseman Adrian Beltre passed Rod Carew for the most career hits by a Latin-born player. The double was Beltre’s 3,054th of his career. Beltre, of course, was born in the Dominican Republic. Carew was born in Panama.
Beltre is now in sole possession of 25th place on baseball’s all-time hits list. His next hit will tie him with Rickey Henderson in 24th plate. Craig Biggio will be Beltre’s next target after that, at 3,060.
Beltre, who turns 39 years old on Saturday, had struggled to begin the year, entering Thursday’s action batting .192 in 26 at-bats. He’s coming off of an impressive 2017 in which he hit .312 with a .915 OPS.
The Mets told catcher Devin Mesoraco on Saturday that he will not make the team, Mike Puma of the New York Post reported. Mesoraco, a major league veteran of eight seasons, said he won’t accept a reassignment to Triple-A. According to Matt Ehalt of Yahoo Sports, the Mets will place Mesoraco on the restricted list rather than release him. As a result, Mesoraco is expected to retire from baseball.
This is a bad look for the Mets. Most teams release the major league-caliber players they don’t plan to break camp with so they can pursue opportunities elsewhere. The Mets must really be hurting for catching depth.
Mesoraco, 30, was decent as the Mets’ back-up last season after coming over from the Reds in the Matt Harvey deal, batting .222/.306/.409 with 10 home runs and 30 RBI in 229 plate appearances. Mesoraco is a bit below-average defensively and spent much of the mid-2010’s on the disabled list dealing with hip and shoulder injuries.
On Monday afternoon, the Mets signed free agent catcher René Rivera, per SNY’s Andy Martino. Rivera was recently released by the Giants. He is less potent with the bat than Mesoraco, but a bit better defensively. Rivera will back up Wilson Ramos and Travis d'Arnaud will likely open the season on the injured list. Tomás Nido will be the third-string catcher behind Rivera.