April 19, 2021

The Baseball 100: No. 52, Adrián Beltré (The Athletic)

Starting in December and ending on Opening Day, Joe Posnanski will count down the 100 greatest baseball players by publishing an essay on a player every day for 100 days. In all, this project will contain roughly as many words as “Moby Dick.” Yes, we know it’s nutty. We hope you enjoy. 

The Los Angeles Dodgers signed Adrián Beltré for $23,000 when he was just 15 years old. It turns out that this was not only an all-time bargain, it also was illegal — teams were not allowed to sign players until they turned 16 — and unethical.

It’s daunting how often you dig into baseball history and find people and teams skirting the rules.

The Dodgers had to figure that even if they got caught, it would be worth it. See, Beltré was born to be a ballplayer. Literally. Months before he was born, his father, Bienvenido Beltré, went to his friend Felipe Alou (who was a minor-league manager in the Expos organization at the time) and explained that his…

Read “The Baseball 100: No. 52, Adrián Beltré” at The Athletic