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MLB St Louis Cardinals

2014 MLB Free Agency: 5 Potential Landing Spots for Carlos Beltran

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Five Possible Landing Spots for Carlos Beltran

Greg M. Cooper - USA Today Sports

Carlos Beltran could be headed to a massive payday this offseason.

Beltran is set to hit free agency after a great season with the St. Louis Cardinals where he was a key player in a team that ended up losing the World Series to the Boston Red Sox. His good defense in the outfield and solid hitting abilities could be appealing to several teams that need help either at the plate or defensively so there’s a chance he will be a sought-after player when the phones start ringing.

Beltran has already stated the intention to play two or three more years so he could be a target for several teams. He could be a veteran presence in the locker room of a rebuilding team, a solid bat in the outfield on a contending team or even a DH in the AL, something that would allow him to rest his body as age is quickly catching up with him and would also allow him to further extend his career.

The following five teams are the ones considered as front-runners in the Carlos Beltran sweepstakes. Either because of a flexible payroll because he already played for a given organization or simply due to the fact that he appears like a good fit, these five teams might try to sign one of the most coveted free agents that will be on the market.

Without further ado, please join me through this slideshow as we check five possible landing spots for Carlos Beltran towards the next season.

Juan Pablo Aravena is a sports writer for Follow him on Twitter @jparavenarant or add him to your network on Google

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5. Cincinnati Reds

David Kohl - USA Today Sports

Although it’s highly unlikely that Carlos Beltran ends up with a division rival after his stint with the St. Louis Cardinals, the Cincinnati Reds could definitely use him. With Shin-Soo Choo set to leave the Reds could easily slot him into the outfield where he will be able to provide solid defense and good offense.

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4. Texas Rangers

Mark J. Rebilas - USA Today Sports

The Texas Rangers have a glaring hole in the corner outfield after the departure of Nelson Cruz, and Carlos Beltrán seems to be a good fit to replace him. The advantage of the DH rule in the AL would allow the Rangers to slot him as a designated hitter when necessary. That would allow him to stay fit and rested in case the Rangers make a postseason run.

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3. New York Mets

Anthony Gruppuso - USA Today Sports

The New York Mets reportedly have money to spend, and they need to upgrade their outfield after trading Marlon Byrd this past season. Beltrán would be a nice fit in terms of salary and performance although it’s yet to be seen if the veteran prefers to stay in the NL or move to the AL.

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2. New York Yankees

Noah K. Murray - USA Today Sports

The Bronx Bombers need to replace Curtis Granderson, and they also need an offensive punch after a year where they couldn’t reach the postseason. The re-signing of manager Joe Girardi suggests the Yankees are looking to contend once again, and the signing of Beltrán would add more offense to a lineup that will need powerful bats to contend.

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1. St. Louis Cardinals

Scott Kane - USA Today Sports

Both sides have mutual interest and it wouldn’t be strange to see Carlos Beltran back with the Cards next season. It remains to be seen whether an agreement can be reached, but after his postseason performance it seems there’s no reason why the St. Louis Cardinals shouldn’t bring him back once again.