“It’s been a good interview,” Beltran said. “At the beginning, it’s a little bit overwhelming. It’s a lot of information that you have to digest. Most importantly, the part that we’re discussing is an opportunity to be a manager and to manage a team that has so much tradition. It really motivates me to do well.”
Beltran joined a crowded and diverse field of managerial candidates, with Rob Thomson, Eric Wedge, Hensley Meulens, Aaron Boone and Chris Woodward having preceded him. The Yankees do not have a set timetable to name Joe Girardi’s successor, and they may add more interviews to that list.
Having just capped his playing career with his first World Series championship as a member of the Astros, Beltran has no managerial or coaching experience, but he believes that his recent contributions to the Yankees and Astros rosters show that he is ready to assume a position of authority in the Majors.
“This is something that I feel comfortable doing,” Beltran said. “We discussed strategies, discussed how we can get better as a ballclub. There’s no doubt that this organization has done a great job making moves and adding players and getting younger prospects in the Minor Leagues. The future for this organization looks bright, and I’m excited about that.”
Beltran said that having a veteran bench coach on staff, preferably one who has managed in the big leagues, could offset his inexperience. He described his relationship with Yankees general manager Brian Cashman as “solid” and “professional,” revealing that he expressed his interest in managing prior to a Yankees-Astros game this past season.
During that on-field conversation, Beltran told Cashman that he would welcome an opportunity to return to the Yankees, for whom he played 341 games from 2014-16.
“Eventually I said to him, ‘If there is anything that I could do for [the Yankees] organization once I retire, I will be available,'” Beltran said. “Honestly, the time that I spent in New York was a great time, and I really enjoyed every moment of it.”
Beltran added that he is comfortable embracing and working with the new wave of analytics, which are viewed as a prerequisite for any modern big league manager. With Houston this year, Beltran occasionally served as a liaison between the team’s analytics department and the players in the clubhouse.
“I personally feel that out of those 20 years, I played naked in a lot of them because I didn’t have all this information,” Beltran said.
After the World Series, Beltran said that he anticipated spending time at home with his family. When Cashman called three days ago inviting Beltran to interview, however, Beltran said that his wife Jessica and their children gave him their blessing to pursue the position.
“This is not something that you can turn away from,” Beltran said. “These types of opportunities, especially one with the Yankees, they don’t come very often. I’m committed for the job, there’s no doubt about that, and excited if I get the opportunity. I would love to manage. I would love to give back to the game.”