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Beltran's focus on reaching base, not hitting homers

Beltran's focus on reaching base, not hitting homers

Beltran's focus on reaching base, not hitting homers play video for Beltran's focus on reaching base, not hitting homers

ST. LOUIS -- After hitting his 19th homer of the season on June 30, it took Carlos Beltran 105 at-bats before he connected for another. But while his home run drought -- which lasted until he went deep in the eighth inning on Tuesday -- may have provided discussion fodder for some, Beltran insists that it never really occupied his thoughts.

"To me, it's not [a big deal]," Beltran said. "What is important to me is just to get on base. I don't go to the plate thinking that I need to hit the ball out of the ballpark. That's not who I am. I won't change."

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Even with the recent sap in power numbers, Beltran leads the club with his 20 homers, and reaching that mark puts him in rare active company. Securing the 11th 20-homer season of his 16-year career, he is one of only 11 active players to accrue that many such seasons. Only five -- Alex Rodriguez (15), Manny Ramirez (14), Paul Konerko (13), David Ortiz (12) and Albert Pujols (12) -- have had more.

Already fifth all-time with 354 homers as a switch-hitter, Beltran has another benchmark in sight. With 12 more homers, he would match former teammate Lance Berkman on that list.

Jenifer Langosch is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, By Gosh, It's Langosch, and follow her on Twitter @LangoschMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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