ESPN.com's David Schoenfield brought up an interesting topic after Texas Rangers third baseman had yet another big game at the plate Monday night against the Tampa Bay Rays. Is Beltre turning into a Hall of Fame candidate? You can read his whole story here. Some excerpts:
ESPN analyst Tim Kurkjian, with perfect timing, raised the question as Adrian Beltre dug in against David Price to lead off the bottom off the second inning: "It's time to start thinking of Beltre in a Hall of Fame terms ..." BOOM! Beltre turned on a 1-1 inside fastball, lining it over the left-field fence for his 25th home run.
I agree with Kurkjian that Beltre's not there yet, but in a few more years the career totals will start to mount.
Beltre has a .278 career average and has reached 20 home runs in 10 seasons. More importantly, he's far from finished. He was just 19 when he reached the majors so has a chance to finish with some impressive career totals. He's just 33 now and is signed for four more years. If he averages 25 home runs, 80 RBIs and 140 hits per season through 2016, we're looking at 445 home runs, more than 1,500 RBIs and more than 2,700 hits. If he proves exceptionally durable and plays until he's 40, he has a shot at 500 home runs and 3,000 hits.
Durrett's take: Beltre still has time to build his Hall of Fame resume. He isn't quite a Hall of Famer yet, but I think he can certainly get there if he keeps putting up these numbers.
Incidentally, I asked Beltre what it meant to be mentioned in the same breath with Albert Pujols, Babe Ruth, Reggie Jackson and George Brett as the only members of a group that has three-homer games in the postseason and regular-season and his first words: "Those guys are Hall of Famers." I took that to mean he didn't consider himself in that category. But if he serves out the terms of this contract in Texas and plays at a high level throughout, he's going to have a pretty good case when the time comes.
What do you think? Is Adrian Beltre putting together a Hall of Fame career?