The Mets’ Carlos Beltran will manage to avoid Ben Sheets’ first start of 2006 later this afternoon.

From the AP :

New York Mets center fielder Carlos Beltran sat out Sunday’s game against the Milwaukee Brewers because of tightness in his right hamstring.

Beltran was hurt in Saturday’s 8-2 loss to the Brewers when he nearly collided in a play at first base with Prince Fielder. He left the game in the eighth inning.

“I went to see the doctor after the game and he said it was nothing major,” Beltran said. “But I woke up Sunday feeling sore.”

Beltran reported the injury to Mets manager Willie Randolph and they decided he would take Sunday off and see how the injury responds to treatment and anti-inflammatories.

The Yankees have signed 1B Carlos Pena (above), recently dispatched by Detroit and Texas in short succession, to a minor league contract. Pena will report to Columbus but could well provide Joe Torre with a bottom-of-the-order option compared to the Giambino (a better fit at DH), Andy Phillips or Miguel Cairo.