Mets were surprised Carlos Beltran was involved in Astros sign-stealing scandal

Another manager has fallen in the wake of the Houston Astros sign-stealing scandal. The New York Mets mutually parted ways with their recently-hired manager Carlos Beltran, who was a player on the 2017 Astros.

General manager Brodie Van Wagenen and chief operating officer Jeff Wilpon held a conference call following the announcement, during which they attempted to explain how the Mets arrived at this decision. They gave a few details about what had taken place since Beltran had been hired, and how the Mets and Beltran eventually came to this decision.

Nov. 1: Beltran hired

The Mets announced Beltran’s hiring on November 1. Van Wagenen said during the conference call that at that time, they had not heard anything about Beltran’s involvement in the scandal directly, nor had Van Wagenen heard any “rumblings” about Beltran’s time with the Astros.

Nov. 14: Astros cheating scandal breaks

The Athletic published the first report about the Astros using technology to steal signs on November 14. Beltran spent the 2017 season with the Astros, playing as the designated hitter and eventually winning his first and only World Series ring. The report featured a reference to a “veteran player” and a coach masterminding the scheme, but it was not known to be Beltran at that time.

Van Wagenen told the media on Thursday that when the story broke, they didn’t discuss it with Beltran at all, preferring to wait until MLB’s investigation was complete.

Jan. 13: MLB releases investigation report, Beltran implicated

Commissioner Rob Manfred released his official report on his investigation into the Astros’ sign-stealing during the 2017 season on Monday. Beltran was the only player named in the document, confirming that he was the veteran player referenced in The Athletic’s original report. He and Alex Cora developed the sign-stealing scheme which was used during the 2017 regular season and postseason.

Wilpon said that at an earlier point, he had been told by “sources” that Beltran wouldn’t be suspended. That turned out to be true (the cheating occurred while Beltran was a player, so he was not suspended), but Beltran’s presence in the MLB investigation report was unexpected.

Jan. 15: Mets executives meet with commissioner’s office

In light of Beltran being the only player named in the report, Van Wagenen told the media that he had met with the commissioner’s office on Wednesday to gain more clarity on Beltran’s role in the sign-stealing.

Van Wagenen refused to give any details on what was said or what he learned during that meeting.

Jan. 16: Mets, Beltran part ways

Both Wilpon and Van Wagenen emphasized that Beltran was not fired, but that both parties came to a mutual agreement that they should part ways. Van Wagenen wouldn’t share many details, but Wilpon revealed that MLB had no role in their decision.

They also wouldn’t reveal if Beltran’s contract will be paid out in full, or if they reached a buyout agreement.

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