Breaking Beckham News
Following tonight’s game …
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Wednesday, June 3, 2009
WHITE SOX TO PURCHASE CONTRACT OF GORDON BECKHAM
FROM CLASS AAA CHARLOTTE AND DESIGNATE WILSON BETEMIT
CHICAGO – The Chicago White Sox have announced that prior to tomorrow’s game vs. the Oakland A’s they will purchase the contract of infielder Gordon Beckham from Class AAA Charlotte and designate infielder Wilson Betemit for assignment.
Beckham, 22, was the White Sox first-round selection (No. 8 overall) in the 2008 First-Year Player Draft out of the University of Georgia. He will reach the major leagues just 364 days after being drafted on June 5, 2008.
The 6-foot-0, 190-pounder combined to hit .326 (57-175) with 23 doubles, four home runs and 25 RBI in 45 combined games this season between Class AA Birmingham and Class AAA Charlotte. He appeared in 32 games at shortstop, eight at third base, four at second and one at designated hitter. Six of his seven starts at Charlotte were at third base.
Beckham began the season with Birmingham, batting .299 (44-147) with four homers, 17 doubles, four homers and 22 RBI in 38 games to earn a promotion to Charlotte on May 28. He hit safely in all seven of his games with the Knights, going 13-28 (.464) with six doubles and three RBI.
Beckham, a career .322 hitter (75-233) in 59 minor-league games, will be the third member of the 2008 draft class to reach the major leagues, joining Detroit’s Ryan Perry (No. 21) and Arizona’s Daniel Schlereth (No. 26), and the first position player.
He will be the fastest White Sox No. 1 draft choice to reach the majors since Alex Fernandez was selected fourth overall on June 4, 1990 and made his debut on August 2 of that season at Milwaukee, a span of 58 days. Beckham, a native of Atlanta, also will become the fastest Sox position player drafted in the first round to debut since shortstop Lee Richard was taken No. 6 overall in 1970 before making Chicago’s Opening Day roster in 1971.
Beckham entered the season ranked by Baseball America as the No. 1 Prospect in the White Sox organization. He was named the SEC Player of the Year and a First-Team All-America in 2008 after hitting .411 with 28 home runs, 77 RBI and 97 runs scored to lead the Bulldogs to a runner-up finish at the College World Series. Beckham’s 28 home runs were a school record and tied for the NCAA lead.
Betemit, 27, batted .200 (9-45) with three RBI in 20 games with the White Sox this season. He was acquired from the Yankees on November 13, 2008 as part of a five-player deal.