San Francisco Giants: What Can We Expect from Carlos Beltran at AT&T Park?

Manny RandhawaCorrespondent IIIJuly 29, 2011

PHILADELPHIA, PA - JULY 28: Carlos Beltran #15 of the San Francisco Giants runs towards first base on a foul ball during the game against the Philadelphia Phillies at Citizens Bank Park on July 28, 2011 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Drew Hallowell/Getty Images)
Drew Hallowell/Getty Images

Right fielder

Carlos Beltran, just acquired by the San Francisco Giants, has never homered in 96 career plate appearances at his new home field, AT&T Park.

But that stat by itself doesn't tell the whole story.

Beltran is a lifetime .310 hitter at the park on the shores of San Francisco Bay and, from 2008 to 2010, he hit .375 there in 40 at-bats with a .600 slugging percentage and a 1.032 OPS. His batting average at AT&T Park is the highest out of any ballpark in which Beltran has more than 25 career at-bats.

This accomplishment by Beltran is quite a feat, considering it came against the likes of two-time Cy Young Award winner Tim Lincecum and company.

While Beltran hasn't homered at the home of the Giants yet, he has hit nine doubles and a triple there since 2008. Those extra base hits account for over half of his hits (19) at AT&T.

The sight of Carlos Beltran in a Giants uniform is one more reason the Giants are happy to play at the corner of Third and King Streets in San Francisco.

The defending champions have played in front of 50 straight sell-out crowds, have a 32-18 home record and now have a No. 3 hitter that loves to hit in his new home park.

With Beltran's speed, the spacious right-center field at AT&T could create a real dilemma for opposing managers.

If Beltran hits a ball into "Triples Alley," as it is known to the locals, he'll easily be standing at third with Pablo Sandoval coming up behind him.

If opposing defenses set up to take away the gap in right-center, Beltran will have the right field line open, and is a good enough hitter to exploit such a defensive shift.

Beltran also likes hitting during the stretch run, having posted a .326 batting average during the month of September dating back to 2008.

Add to all of those numbers the incentive of playing for a team with a legitimate chance to reach the World Series, something that Beltran hasn't tasted since 2006, and Beltran could be a real game-changer for San Francisco's offense as the Giants push forward toward the postseason.

When the Giants return to AT&T Park on August 1, they will return with a new third-place hitter, and we can expect an ovation from a packed house for San Francisco's new No. 15.

And based on the numbers, No. 15 won't disappoint his new hometown fans.