NEW YORK -- Because Carlos Beltran isn't "into the computer searching," he wasn't aware of last week's trade rumors linking him to the Red Sox until a family member in Puerto Rico informed him. When he heard, Beltran simply shrugged off the reports. He hadn't received a call from his agent, Scott Boras, nor from Mets general manager Sandy Alderson. And so Beltran correctly assumed there was little substance to the rumors.
"I didn't receive a call from my agent, I didn't receive a call from the organization, so I don't worry about it," Beltran said. "The only thing I have to worry about is to put myself in the condition where I can go to Spring Training and help this team. I'm a Met, and I'm going to continue to work hard until I know something different."
Making that easier is the fact that Beltran is now nearly a full year removed from right knee surgery, giving him -- and the Mets -- hope that he can be more consistent both on offense and defense next season. Already this offseason, Beltran has been able to focus on the lower-body exercises he was forced to ignore last winter, working on strengthening the muscles around his oft-injured knee. Soon, he will begin running at full speed.
"In my situation, unfortunately, it doesn't get better fast," Beltran said. "It's slow. But I'm willing to put my effort in there, and so far I feel good. I feel good, and I've been doing everything I can to be ready."
Bay feeling no effects from concussion
NEW YORK -- Though the Mets don't plan on making any major personnel additions this offseason, they do hope to have a healthy Jason Bay back in the mix. And that's as good an addition as any.
Bay, who has been spending his offseason at home in Washington, doesn't expect the concussion that sidelined him for the final two months of last season to be a problem come spring.
"I've resumed full everything and haven't had one issue or even a twinge of an issue," Bay said.
Even if the Mets had been in contention last summer, Bay might not have been able to return from a concussion that kept him confined to his house in Westchester County for weeks. Though the vertigo, dizziness and nausea eventually faded, a dull headache remained with Bay for much of the rest of the summer.
"It was just a low-grade headache, and I got so used to having a headache, I didn't know I had one," he said. "But since the end of September, I haven't had one headache issue."
Health, of course, is only part of the problem for Bay, who was hitting just .259 with six home runs and 47 RBIs prior to his concussion. That Bay's dip in production came during the first season of a four-year, $66 million contract only exacerbated the problem.
But now fully healthy and fully accustomed to Citi Field, Bay feels he can again serve the Mets as a primary right-handed power threat.
"Last year, for all intents and purposes for me, was a lost year as far as production and injury," Bay said. "[I'm] trying to prove that last year was an aberration and move forward. That's kind of my focus right now."
Collins talks about Alou as future coach
NEW YORK -- For a club not particularly active on the free-agent or trade markets, one of the most intriguing rumors of the Winter Meetings was the possibility of Moises Alou returning to the Mets as a first-base coach. But the rumor, while grounded in fact, never came close to fruition.
"I don't want to make it sound like Mookie Wilson was our second choice," Mets manager Terry Collins said on Tuesday, one day after officially naming Wilson his first-base coach. "Mookie Wilson was not our second choice. I called Moises Alou to see if he had interest in being a coach. He really didn't at that particular time. So I hope it wasn't construed like I had offered him the job."
Alou, 44, is widely considered one of the best pure hitters in baseball, batting .303 over a 17-year career riddled by injury. But Wilson is also an organizational favorite and has served as an instructor for the Mets in the past.
"You know him, he would have brought a lot to the table, a lot to the party," Collins said of Alou. "But I had talked to Mookie Wilson long before about the possibility of being a coach."
Mets general manager Sandy Alderson indicated Tuesday that due to his busy schedule, his chat to discuss a potential role for former GM Omar Minaya may have to wait until after the holidays. ... Alderson also reiterated his stance that the Mets will not sacrifice any long-term payroll flexibility to make the team marginally better in 2011. "As a concept, I'm not interested in borrowing against the future," he said. ... One day after Jose Canseco tweeted asking for a tryout with the Mets, Alderson, the GM at the start of Canseco's career in Oakland, responded. "He wants a tryout? As what?" Alderson said, laughing. "Well, we might need some more right-handed hitting."