Mike Petriello of MLB.com, in yet another article to fill out the doldrums of the long winter, listed the top ten free-agent signings of all time. That’s quite a task given the long history of major league free agency, which began in 1972, and is obviously subjective, but one Rangers transaction made the list.
No, it wasn’t Chan Ho Park. Or Matt More. Or Mark Clark. Or Lance Berkman.
Not surprisingly, it was Adrian Beltre, ranked the seventh best free agent signing in history. Signed to a six-year deal back when the Rangers were still trying, Beltre more than lived up to expectations, in the process beginning a fan favorite and icon for the franchise.
Here’s what Petriello said about it:
“Fresh off a successful one-year stint in Boston, Beltré signed a six-year deal with Texas. He received MVP votes in each of the six seasons, he hit 30 homers or more four times, he continued to play outstanding defense and the Rangers went to the World Series in his first season there. Simply put, he was outstanding in each of the six seasons, and what more can you ask out of a free-agent contract than that?
“The partnership was so successful that he came back for two additional seasons before retiring, and despite not even arriving in Texas until he was 32, it seems incredibly likely he’ll be wearing a Rangers cap when he’s inducted into Cooperstown in a few years.”
You can read the entire article here.