But that possibly-contending status isn't stopping them, apparently, from being sellers at the trade deadline. The New York Post's Kevin Kernan reports that teams are calling to inquire about Carlos Beltran's availability.
Mets GM Sandy Alderson says he's listening to offers, but:
... "it’s still a little bit early" to make deals. He said the Mets remain "relevant" in the wild-card race and he is right, you can’t back up the truck just yet.
"I’m cool with everything," Beltran added. "I just have to come here and continue to do well.
"Right now we are contending. We have a legitimate chance of winning the wild card. We have a lot of games left."
Beltran is in the final year of a seven-year, $119 million contract he signed with the Mets before the 2005 season. It calls for him to be paid $18.5 million in 2011, so there's about $9 million remaining on the deal as of now. According to Hardball Talk, the Mets will be looking for a trade partner willing to pick up all or most of that remaining money. Another obstacle to a deal is Beltran's full no-trade clause.
Despite injury issues in the past, Beltran has been relatively healthy this year and is producing, hitting .285/.373/.506 with 13 HR and 57 RBI in 85 games. He leads the National League with 26 doubles, and can still play a credible center field.