Beltran: 'I Can't Wait'

A winter chill whipped the air through Manhattan's financial district on Tuesday, but there was spring in Carlos Beltran's step. <P> The new Mets outfielder chatted with Inside Pitch and could hardly contain his enthusiasm for the coming season (Premium Content).

What's it been like for you, walking around the city and experiencing the way people now feel about the Mets?

I'm very excited. I know the fans are excited too - back home in Puerto Rico, people have all been talking about the Mets and what they've accomplished, and all that. I can't wait for spring training so we can start working and playing the game. I'm very happy.

Pedro Martinez said that he was here [at the caravan] because he felt he had to be, but he'd rather be home working out. Why are you here?

I'm here to represent the organization. I know they've made a commitment to me for a long time and a lot of money. I feel like I have to give respect to the organization from Day 1 to the last day of my contract.

Did you have fun this morning at the New York Stock Exchange?

It was great. What a great time. I never thought I was going to be able to be in a place like today. There were a lot of people yelling, 'Go Mets,' and waving. They were excited about us being there to ring the bell.

When you came to New York as a visiting player, how much did you go out on the town?

Not really. I don't really like to go out. I like movie theaters, and we went to the movies a few times. I know there's a lot of good restaurants. I love going to restaurants. That's pretty much everything I do.

Do you think that will change this year?

My wife will be [out]. She'll be the one enjoying it, because most of the time when I go on the road she'll have time to be around. I really believe when the season starts, I really have to concentrate on baseball and focus on how to help the team, and make the team better as an organization. We're going in the right direction, and I believe if we all stay healthy and work hard in spring training, we are going to surprise a lot of people.

You came up with this catch-phrase, 'The New Mets', during your introductory press conference. What does it mean to you?

The team looks different, they're continuing to going go out and get new players. New manager, Willie Randolph. New pitcher, Pedro Martinez. New outfielder. I really believe the new Mets, we're going to do a better job than what they've done the last few years.

That's probably going to be their marketing slogan for the season. How does that make you feel?

(Beltran laughs) It makes me feel good that I came up with something good for the organization. Like I said, I'm very happy and very excited. I'm looking forward to it.

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