The Cards officially made their qualifying offer, smartly, to Carlos Beltran. He not only declined, but has reaffirmed he wants 3-4 years, so he won't be staying in St. Louis, if somebody else does pony up. (And, he won't get 4; he'll be lucky to get 3 guaranteed instead of 2+option.)
Among possible suitors? The Yankees have been mentioned, and are likely serious. Boston? In my opinion, they're just trying to drive up the final price tag since David Ortiz is at DH, Shane Victorino in right, and the Johnny Gomes/Daniel Nava platoon in left. Tigers are an outside possibility.
I think he could be "hidden" in a small outfield ballpark in the NL. The Reds aren't going to buy him, but what about Philly? Not likely, with the Marlon Byrd signing.
But, I'm going to jump back to the AL, and one team in particular, that nobody else is mentioning: the Astros.
I don't get why the Stros aren't in the bidding. He played there before,
it's a hitter's park, they're now an AL team with a DH slot, and they need to spend
money on somebody before they start seriously losing fans.
And, he would be a definite upgrade over J.D. Martinez in left, L.J. Hoes in right, or the post-Carlos Pena/revolving door era at DH. You could pencil in Beltran for 135 games at DH, and maybe 10 in each corner OF slot to give a day off to them. He's no more pricey, I'll venture, than Nelson Cruz and less so than Shin-Soo Choo, and makes the Astros more serious right away, while still on a shorter-term contract than Choo's, so not interfering with longer-term plans. Heck, they could pay for Beltran AND one or two others with that $26M payroll from this year the starting point.
This all said, contra an MLB.com writer, I do NOT see him as going to the Royals. He might like the idea, but there's no wallet crowbar that big in Kansas City.