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Herald taking a better approach toward Delgado


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I like the Herald's approach better than the Sun-Sentinel approach:


To Carlos, with hugs and kisses from Miami


The free agent slugger being courted by the Marlins is in town to be officially wooed and hopefully wowed by club officials today. The dastardly Mets are considered the front-runners, so I am prepared here to lend a civic hand with a sort of ''open letter'' to represent South Florida's warmest greetings.


First, sir, before we begin, I trust your flight into our Carlos Delgado International Airport was satisfactory?


OK, technically, naming the airport after you isn't official yet. But we're working on it.


May I call you Carlos, by the way? Or would you prefer ``Your Excellency''?


Want to start clarifying something.


I see the Mets are really pushing the ''Latin influence'' thing to win you over, emphasizing that their Omar Minaya is the big leagues' only Hispanic general manager, and the fact New York has a large Puerto Rican population. The Mets also have enlisted newly signed Carlos Beltran, your friend and countryman, to help win you over.




Well, Mr. Delgado, we in South Florida do not believe in that type of blatant pandering. Wait. Come to think of it, we do believe in that. Very much.


So may I represent? May I remind you Greater Miami invented the Latin influence thing? (Patent pending.) ''Calle Ocho'' ring a bell? I cannot in good conscience do nothing while the Mets strut around claiming to out-Hispanic the Marlins.


Are they serious?


Granted, our GM, Admin Beinfest, is apparently not Hispanic.


Likewise, I have to warn you, before you meet him, manager Jack McKeon doesn't speak Spanish. Sometimes it seems Jack is barely speaking English, and has a habit of bungling names. So if he calls you ''Carlos Santana'' or ''Carl Delgatsby'' or something like that, please don't take it personally.


You will otherwise be engulfed by compadres making you feel welcome in your native tongue. This clubhouse speaks two languages. Three, if you count McKeon.


With Florida, you would anchor an all-Latin American infield with second baseman Luis Castillo from the Dominican, shortstop Alex Gonzalez from Venezuela and third baseman Mike Lowell, whose Main Street-in-Peoria name belies a bloodline that is Puerto Rican and Cuban.


Yes, as a veteran, you would help nurture the outstanding potential of outfielder Miguel Cabrera of Venezuela. You'd be an eyewitness at first base as closer Guillermo Mota of the Dominican got the save for starter Ismael Valdez from Mexico.




There are other reasons you'd be better off here, Carlos, and I don't even mean because the Marlins, who won a World Series in 2003, are closer to a championship team than even Pedro Martinez and Beltran have made the lowly Mets.


For one thing: proximity. The New York-to-San Juan flight takes 3 hours 50 minutes; the Miami-San Juan is a quick hop of 2:25. That's nearly a three-hour savings on a round-trip home. Imagine what you could get accomplished in that time?


You could spend three hours lolling on the sand at South Beach sipping pi?a coladas and obliging the occasional autograph requests from topless, sunbathing supermodels.


Or you could spend a similar amount of time stuck in traffic in Queens, or shoveling snow during the winter.


There is also the media factor. The New York media is mean. Yeah, those tabloids are already waiting with their back-page banner headlines for your first 0-for-4 game. The Daily News will opt for ''WASTED MILLIONS!'' The alliterative Post leans toward ''BELTRAN BUST!'' Or maybe ``CARLOS DELZERO!''


Here? Here we are famously nice, Carlos. Heck, we even let you pick your own adjectives! Here, Your Friend the Media promises to be patient and kind, as long as you promise to not throw interceptions that are continually returned for touchdowns.


Also, look around. Down here you'd instantly slot in as our second-biggest active sports star nationally after Shaquille O'Neal.


In New York, you'd be lost. You'd be a Met . . . Garfunkel to the Yankees' Simon. Here you'd be king. There you'd be Queens, in the deep shadow of the Bronx.


We are even prepared to forgive you for not standing during God Bless America while with Toronto last year, to mark your objection to the war in Iraq. You obviously are a man of conscience, Carlos.


Besides, the only political requirement for living in South Florida is that you loathe Fidel Castro.


I presume the Marlins will make you feel as welcome as I've hoped to in addition to throwing a bunch of contractual commas at you today. The itinerary for your visit is top secret, but we do know owner Jeffrey Loria will be a part of it.


Loria cut short a European vacation to be here for you. If that (along with a three-year, $35 million offer) isn't love, what is?


Oppositely, Mets owner Fred Wilpon has yet to meet with you, right? There is a rumor Wilpon is upset over that whole God Bless America thing and also thinks you are overrated and over the hill.


I started that rumor.


Just trying to do my part

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LMAO, that was fantastic. Which Herald writer wrote that? Sounds like something from Le Batard, but then again he only writes about negative things and would probably be pushing for Delgado to go to the Braves or something :lol .



That was written by Greg Cote, the same who wrote the positive article about the Marlins the other day.

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