NL East Update: The one where Beltran moves to right, Pagan takes over center

Carlos Beltran has told reporters that he will switch to right field, making Angel Pagan the starting center fielder for the New York Mets.

I’m not going to lie, I didn’t see this coming. I just never imagined Carlos would hand over center field this easily, but in his words, “I just did not want to be a distraction to Terry (Collins), Angel, or the team.” Its best that he made this announcement early because he has given himself time to get acclimated to the new position, but my gut feeling is that he won’t be ready for Opening Day, despite a statement saying that he would be. It will be weird seeing Beltran in a corner outfield spot since he has been holding down center for so long. For what its worth, the last time Beltran played right field was in 2000 for the Kansas City Royals.

Chase Utley had an MRI that revealed “Patella tendinitis” in his right knee. What does this mean for the rest of his career?

Utley is 32-years old and has had issues with his hip, thumb, and now his knee. This puts the Phillies in a awkward position because as much as they want to have him out there everyday, he is clearly not able to put together a full healthy season. So where do the Phillies go from here? Will they make a push for Michael Young? Rumors linking the two sides will likely arise, but what would Philadelphia have to give up in return, and would it even be worth it?

It took one Spring Training game for Marlins outfielder Mike Stanton to pull up limping.

This is a common occurrence early in March. Players are not physically ready for 100% game speed and their bodies respond in a negative way. In a sense, Stanton is just breaking himself in for the riggers on the season. After an off day or two we could see Stanton out there again. On the bright side, Stanton belted a two-run home run on the first pitch he saw in his previous at bat.

Talking Chop answers five burning questions concerning the Atlanta Braves this Spring Training.

These are the five most important factors for the Braves this season in my eyes. Each question addresses a situation that could severely impact Atlanta’s season for better or worse, so it’s hard to rank their importance. However, I would say that I am most confident with Martin Prado in left field. Being the natural all-around baseball player that he is, it’s hard to imagine him making too many costly mistakes with his glove.

Are the Washington Nationals and Philadelphia Phillies the next great rivalry in baseball?

Nationals GM Mike Rizzo said it best; “the Phillies have had so much success at our expense.” This has the makings for a great rivalry due to the cities close proximity and because of Jayson Werth, who Washington hopes will be the catalyst for a new and improved era. It could be a David vs. Goliath situation where the Phillies dynasty clashes with the young upstart Nationals. Even if its not much of a rivalry this year, the pieces are in place for some competitive baseball games in the future.