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Carlos Beltran plays the outfield

Jun 11, 2010, 4:23 PM EDT

Carlos Beltran’s rehabilitation continues apace. Today, for the first time, he played some center field in an extended spring training game.  He also went 3 for 5 with a homer.

I’ve always wondered about “extended spring training.”  Who are the other 17 guys the rehabbing star is playing against? Are they any good? Do they make it like simulated games for pitchers and just make up rules to accommodate the player in question or is it a regulation game? I’m assuming the Mets play their extended spring training games in Tradition Field in Port St. Lucie. Does anyone come to watch them? Do the players go to that same cheesy sports bar around the corner afterward?

I don’t feel like being in Florida in June, but in the interests of journalism, I’d gladly accept an expenses-paid trip down there to cover extended spring training.

  1. ecp - Jun 11, 2010 at 4:37 PM

    They are not regulation games, and they do often make up rules to accommodate a certain player and create certain situations. The other players are other rehabbing guys, as well as an organizations youngest/least experienced kids who have not yet been assigned to a minor league team. Most will be assigned to a short-season rookie league team in a couple of weeks when those leagues get going. The bulk of them are last year’s later round draftees and the real young new international signees. I don’t know if they are strictly intrasquad or if other teams come in to play.

  2. Chris - Jun 11, 2010 at 5:08 PM

    What is extended spring training?
    Well, perhaps you should have looked it up if you were so curious…

  3. jwb - Jun 11, 2010 at 9:12 PM

    From the article Chris posted:
    “Gone is the hustle and bustle of spring training with every player, coach, and front office executive in the organization bouncing around ”
    This varies from organization to organization. Some have some (Yankees, Tigers) of their baseball operations staff located at their spring training facilities. My next door neighbor’s son worked for the Tigers in Lakeland. He would watch the end of EST games during his lunch break. A few staff members and maybe a roving instructor were about it for the crowd. Unlike the Indians, the Tigers keep their ST dorms open for players and lower level staff.
    As for players going out beers after the games, most of them are underage and broke. Rovers Jon Matlack, Toby Harrah, and Rafael Belliard (he had no idea who the former two were) were good for a few rounds and good conversation when they were in town.
    hangover Minister.

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