Gordon Beckham Promoted

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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Brendan Scolari
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Brendan Scolari
7 years 22 days ago

Gordon Beckham is actually not the first hitter from the 2008 draft to reach the big leagues. Conor Gillaspie, a 3rd baseman drafted by the Giants, was promoted in September of last year.

Kevin S.
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Kevin S.
7 years 22 days ago

Wait, is Beckham coming up to play third? I thought they had planned the entire time for him to be a second baseman, hence Alexei moving to short. Of course, he should have been moved to center, but no need to beat that dead horse anymore.

Larry
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Larry
7 years 22 days ago

there was no plan for beckham to be a 2B. i have no idea from where you got that. alexei moved to short because that’s his natural position. if the plan the entire time were for beckham to play 2B, i’d imagine he would have done that a whole lot in the minors.

Dennis N.
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Dennis N.
7 years 22 days ago

As a Sox fan, I’m hesitantly ecstatic about this move. Maybe he’s ready now, maybe his defense will turn out to be a liability. In a division that’s this wide open one-third of the way through the season, it can’t hurt to make a bold move like this.

Plus, it’ll be nice to have Goggles Bettermitt out of here. Even as a back-up, his glove was killing the Sox.

Roscoe
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7 years 22 days ago

The A’s should look into Betemit

JD
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JD
7 years 20 days ago

Why should the A’s look into Betemit. Betemit isn’t a major leaguer. He can’t hit or field. He’s not an upgrade on Crosby or Hannahan. I don’t think he’s an upgrade on Petit or Pennington, either. Why exactly should they look into him?

AJP
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AJP
7 years 22 days ago

Last Night Ozzie said that Beckham will get AB’s he didn’t specifically point out at what position but he said he’s going to get a lot of playing time at 2B and 3B and a little bit of time at SS and maybe even some outfield work. They believe that Beckham’s bat is ready and if numbers are any indication he is. The thing I worry about him is his glove, he has 10 errors so far in the minors combine AA & AAA and has had problems with his glove dating all the way back to college. Hopefully this won’t become too much of a problem though and if it is hopefully his bat can make up for it. His bat is beyond his age in talant, he’s as pure of a hitter as they come. His approach at the plate is very good & disciplined, he has a short-compact swing, above average speed, and a lot of gap power. The gap power he has is something you don’t see from too many youngsters, once he’s established himself in the big leagues you can count on him being a league leader in doubles. He also has a lot of raw power thats still developing, when he first hits the scene he’ll have limited power but he has the potential to really hit the ball a long way. Overall Beckham is a special player that has a bright future ahead of him and I wish him the best of luck.

Go Sox!

CH
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CH
7 years 22 days ago

This kid reminds me of Michael Young, especially since his team can’t decide which IF position he should play. Hopefully he’ll hit as many line drives as Young.

Eric
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Eric
7 years 22 days ago

Daniel Schlereth also debuted this season.

Kevin S.
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Kevin S.
7 years 21 days ago

Daniel Schlereth isn’t a hitter.

Nate
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Nate
7 years 21 days ago

Whatever happend to Dayan Viciedo? I thought he was supposed to be the future at 3B for the Sox.

Walter Jones
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Walter Jones
7 years 21 days ago

He is. He’s doing OK in AA.

Walter Jones
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Walter Jones
7 years 21 days ago

BTW: If Viciedo turns out to be an average 3B, fantastic. Otherwise, it seems the Sox are treating him much like Carlos Lee — feeling out his value in the infield before exiling him to the OF or 1B.

Chomps McGee
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Chomps McGee
7 years 21 days ago

I’ve been hearing, since Day 1 when they drafted Beckham, that there would be little chance they keep him at SS. With his arm and range, 2B seems to be a better fit for him.

Regardless, I’m excited to see the kid’s bat. It was a ton of fun to watch him and Georgia last year in the CWS and I hope he matures into another productive second-baseman in the Kinsler/Pedroia/Hill mold.

Newcomer
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7 years 21 days ago

White Sox fan here.

The talk early on with Beckham was that he would quite possibly end up at 2B, but the organization decided to keep him at SS until it became evident that either he couldn’t handle SS or, more likely, the team would need him to play 2B or 3B. Entering the season, they were hoping Fields would establish himself at 3B and/or Getz would establish himself at 2B. While Fields has struggled, Betemit has been absolutely terrible (4 E in 8 Chances at 3B, and he’s looked bad on every play I’ve seen).

Beckham was playing mostly SS but a little bit of 2B and 3B in AA, then they moved him up to AAA for about a week at 3B. He has yet to hit a snag offensively, including spring training with the big club, where he made a solid case to make the team. His brief stay at AAA was a 7-game hitting streak.

Alexei was a SS in Cuba, where he allegedly had played a little bit of 2B and CF. Last spring, they tried him in several places, and they determined that his 2B defense was rough though his SS defense was good. O-Cab was playing SS, but Ramirez took over for a struggling Juan Uribe at 2B. This year they moved him back to SS, and after struggling early on, he has been very solid defensively. His UZR/150 (I know, small sample):
’08 2B: -10.6
’09 SS: +12.9

The one thing Ramirez needs to work on is accuracy on the rushed throw to 1B, but a) Konerko saves a lot of errors and b) he’s been throwing better of late.

Viciedo is still playing 3B as far as I know, but there are serious questions about whether he can stick there. If he loses a little weight and works on it, he might be decent there, but it remains to be seen. He is not shining as well as Beckham was in AA (.279/.297/.363, .306 wOBA), and remember, Viciedo is only 20.

I hope that clears up some confusion.

JD
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JD
7 years 20 days ago

Viciedo, if he ever even makes the majors with the White Sox, will absolutely not be a regular third baseman.

Randka
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4 years 8 months ago

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