On one knee, Adrian Beltre swings big

October, 25, 2011
ARLINGTON, Texas -- Third baseman Adrian Beltre flashed his brilliant leather once again on the first play of the game to rob Rafael Furcal of a lead-off double for the second consecutive game.

But it was in the sixth inning that Beltre left jaws agape, dropping to one knee and crushing an off-speed offering from St. Louis Cardinals pitcher Chris Carpenter to tie Game 5. It set the stage for Mike Napoli's heroics in the eighth as the Rangers closed out their 2011 home season with a dramatic 4-2 win for a 3-2 lead in the World Series.

For Beltre, it was a long overdue blast. He connected three times in the Game 4 clincher over the Tampa Bay Rays in the ALDS and he hadn't hit one since.

Carpenter made one mistake in the third inning to Mitch Moreland and then Beltre followed the breaking pitch, waited, waited, followed it all the way to knee level before dropping to a knee and taking a windmill swing to launch it out of the park.

"He’s not a guy that leaves a lot of pitches over the plate," Beltre said of Carpenter. "He threw me a couple breaking balls on the last at bat. When I saw it was a breaking ball, I was able to stay back and try to put a good swing on it."

Beltre is hitting .286 in the postseason, but he also has had a difficult time making contact with a team-high 16 strikeouts. This from a guy who hit 12 homers in a 15-game stretch in September. Those strikeouts are in the past and all Beltre is focused on now is doing the job to help himself and the Rangers win a first World Series title.

He's been flashing the glove throughout, and his now bat, flaming hot to end the regular season, is heating up, too.

"I’ve been waiting 14 years for this," Beltre said. "It hasn’t been easy. I’ve been on teams that haven’t been too good and I’ve been on teams that have been in the postseason but got out of it quick. Being in this situation now, so close, you just want to get it over with and get one more win."



You must be signed in to post a comment

Already have an account?


Fitzsimmons and Durrett: Jon Daniels

Rangers GM Jon Daniels joins Fitzsimmons and Durrett to tackle the tough questions after his team failed to advance to the playoffs.

Galloway & Company: Nolan Ryan

Nolan Ryan joins Galloway and Company to discuss having Nelson Cruz back in the lineup and how the Rangers are feeling heading into their wild-card play-in game against the Rays.

Fitzsimmons & Durrett: Jim Bowden

ESPN Insider and senior MLB analyst Jim Bowden joins Fitzsimmons and Durrett to discuss the wild-card race and the Rangers' chances of making the playoffs.

Fitzsimmons and Durrett: Chuck Cooperstein

Chuck Cooperstein joins Ian Fitzsimmons and Tim MacMahon to discuss why he feels Rangers pitcher Yu Darvish isn't an ace.

Galloway & Company: Elvis Andrus

Elvis Andrus joins Galloway and Company to discuss the Rangers' stretch run and the morale level in their clubhouse.

Galloway & Company: Nolan Ryan

Nolan Ryan joins Galloway and Company to discuss the latest Rangers news, including the team's struggles, Ron Washington's job security and a rumored trade with the Braves.

Fitzsimmons & Durrett: Ron Washington

Ron Washington joins Ian Fitzsimmons and Tim MacMahon to discuss the Rangers' dismal September, who's to blame for their September struggles and his status as the team's manager.

Fitzsimmons & Durrett: Fire Wash?

Fitzsimmons and Durrett discuss how some people are calling for the Rangers to fire manager Ron Washington.


Elvis Andrus
.302 1 3 9
HRE. Andrus 1
RBIA. Rios 7
RE. Andrus 9
OPSS. Choo .830
WP. Figueroa 2
ERAY. Darvish 0.82
SOY. Darvish 23