Engel Manuel Beltre
- Bats Left, Throws Left
- Height 6' 2", Weight 180 lb.
Beltre was rated as the #2 international amateur prospect by ESPN Deportes in 2006. He was signed by scout Pablo Lantigua for the Boston Red Sox for $600,000. After starting 2007 poorly with the GCL Red Sox (.208/.310/.400 in 34 G, 44 K in 125 AB), Boston sent him with Kason Gabbard and David Murphy to the Texas Rangers for Eric Gagné. He hit .310/.388/.583 in 22 games for the AZL Rangers after the trade and .211/.250/.211 in 9 games for the Spokane Indians. Engel was rated by Baseball America as the 2nd-best prospect in the Arizona League after Angel Villalona and as Texas's #10 prospect.
The Dominican outfielder spent 2008 with the Clinton Lumber Kings, producing at a .283/.308/.403 rate with 9 triples and 31 steals in 42 tries. One bad sign was 15 walks to 105 strikeouts, showing questionable strike-zone judgment. He did lead the Midwest League in hits (160), outfield putouts (273) and runs (87) and was third in total bases (228) despite being the youngest player in the league. He was rated by Baseball America as the league's #6 prospect, behind Mike Moustakas, Neftali Feliz, Jarrod Parker, Ben Revere and Brett Wallace and right ahead of Andrew Lambo. The publication also ranked him as Texas's #7 prospect. He hit .214 in limited action that winter for the Azucareros del Este.
Beltre sputtered in 2009, hitting .227/.281/.317 in 84 games for the Bakersfield Blaze. He then injured his right hand and missed over a month, returning to the AZL Rangers for three games and the Frisco RoughRiders for four. Beltre did far better the next year, starting off strong with Bakersfield (.331/.376/.460 in 68 games) to earn a promotion back to Frisco. He fell to .254/.301/.337 after the promotion to Frisco, with one homer in 47 games and a .223 average against right-handers. He finished the year with 8 triples, most in the Texas chain. Had he qualified, he would have tied for third in the California League in average. Baseball America rated him as the #5 prospect in the league, after Mike Trout, Brandon Belt, Grant Green and Tyler Chatwood.
With Frisco in 2011, Beltre got into trouble when he was caught on tape throwing a trash can into the stands during a game at San Antonio, TX on April 26. The fracas occurred after manager Steve Buechele was ejected from the game for arguing a call, and fans started heckling the visiting Frisco team. Bats were also thrown into the crowd during the incident, but the perpetrators could not be identified. Beltre was handed a 15-game suspension for his actions and faced criminal charges of disorderly conduct.
Beltre was the starting centerfielder for the Spanish national team in the 2013 World Baseball Classic. He began the following season with the AAA Round Rock Express. After hitting .300 in 72 games for Round Rock, he was called up to the majors and made his big league debut on June 26th, appearing as a pinch runner against the New York Yankees. He made a start in centerfield the next day and went 2-for-3 versus New York.
- 2010 Rangers Media Guide
- 2008-2011 Baseball Almanacs