NEW YORK (BaseballStL) -- Carlos Beltran returns to face the New York Mets for the first time since being traded to the San Francisco Giants at the deadline last year.
Beltran won two Silver Sluggers in seven seasons with the Mets before injuries slowed him down in recent years.
Since the trade from the Mets and the spacious Citi Field, Beltran has hit 22 home runs with a .309 batting average and 60 runs batted in in 93 games played.
Beltran was out of the starting lineup Wednesday and is expected to return Friday night to face Johan Santana, a familiar foe who has dominated the switch hitter to the tune of a .231 average in 26 career at-bats.
Despite the Cardinals being bitten by the injury bug, the oft-injured Beltran has played in 49 of 51 games this season and remains a threatening presence at the plate in the absence of the departed Albert Pujols. The outfielder has hit .306 with nine runs batted in during his last ten games.