Gordon Beckham wasn’t among first five hitters taken in last June’s draft, but he will be one of the first five hitters from the 2008 draft to appear in the major leagues. Beckham will be promoted before tonight’s game, taking the place of Wilson Betemit. Off to an awful start, Betemit is set to be designated for assignment, some team looking for a utility infielder could take on Betemit. ZiPS projects his bat around league average for the rest of the season which is approximately one of the many things Betemit offers over, say, Angel Berroa.
As for Beckham, he has less than 200 plate appearances in the minors, but the White Sox are apparently satisfied with his polish. Last year, he hit .310/.365/.500 in 63 plate appearances in A-Ball and so far this year he hit an almost identical .299/.366/.497 at Double-A. He’s showcasing some good pop and plate discipline. Defensively it’s hard to tell how Beckham will perform. Some scouting reports indicate Beckham’s arm is only average and his small stature has a lot of people saying his ultimate destination is at second base.
The White Sox third basemen have compiled -8.8 UZR and -11 wRAA. That’s nearly two full wins shaved off the Sox’ total thanks to poor play at the hot corner. Beckham figures to be an immediate upgrade at the plate and in the field.
Only three and a half games separate Chicago from first place Detroit, yet in the tight American League Central, that margin is identical to the Sox’ distant to last place as well. We know Kenny Williams is one of the more aggressive personnel movers in the league, and despite his failed attempts at grabbing Jake Peavy, it’ll be interesting to see if he tries to acquire another starting pitcher or a new second baseman in the coming weeks.
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