Breaking Beckham News

Just Announced

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
FOR ASSIGNMENT

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.

9 Comments

I’m excited to hear about Beckham. Though I am a little nervous about bringing him up so soon.

But, GOOD LUCK Gordon and welcome to the Bigs!

MariE

When the Sox made the deal with the Mets last weekend getting rid of another non productive player in “Corky” Miller I said that if I was Wilson Betemit and Dewayne Wise I’d start being nervous.

Well that didn’t take long did it?

Welcome Gordon Beckham. Now let’s see what the highest draft pick in 20 years can do.

Regarding Wilson Betemit, I laude Kenny for having the guts to admit his mistakes and get rid of unproductive players. Jerry Owens, gone…Mike MacDougal, gone…”Corky” Miller gone…Brent Lillibridge, gone (and based on Ozzie’s comments never to return)…now Betemit, who made 1.3 million this season to do practically nothing.

But what I still don’t understand was exactly what Kenny was thinking in the first place when he got all these unproductive, journeyman, castoff type players over the winter and how could he possibly think the Sox would “contend” with them.

I’m still waiting for the answer to that one.

Mark Liptak

I believe that of the players Mark listed above, Jerry Owens was the only one that Kenny actually thought could possibly contend for a starting role on the club. The others were merely brought on to fill the bench until the real prospects — namely Beckham, Jordan Danks and Poreda — were ready to play at the big league level.

Corky Miller was just another body thrown into the mix to find a backup catcher until one with some experience became available. Miller did the job he was asked to do. No worse than Chris Widger in the World Series winning season, and Toby Hall the past two years.

I’m sure that Kenny and Ozzie are both very disappointed that Betemit played as poorly as he did. But at least he is now gone.

I knew he couldn’t last after that feeble attempt to field the ground ball early in Tuesday’s loss. Kenny knows a bad third baseman when he sees one. Remember, he was one himself back in ’87 when Larry Himes tried to turn a great athlete into a third baseman.

Slayer has finally been promoted!

TC:

While waiting for those “prospects” the Sox lost games…games that will come back to haunt them when that nightmare road trip begins in late August. They played over 50 games with a very weak team.

And over and above that, if Kenny went out and got the players he should have gotten this off season he wouldn’t have had to fill out the bench with cast off’s / retreds and career journeymen, nor would he be put in a position where these prospects again have to be rushed to the big club.

I like Kenny very much, he’s a top GM but unlike you I recognize that he’s made mistakes, some monster one’s (i.e. the 2007 bullpen philosophy and this year’s team). He’s not above critical evaluation… just because I like him doesn’t mean I have blind loyalty to anything he does.

But I found a VERY INTERESTING column from Jack McDowell talking about this team and he brings up some great points something else Kenny needs to consider:

http://www.chicagonow.com/blogs/black-jack-white-sox/2009/06/white-sox-too-soft.html

I recommend reading this.

Mark Liptak

I wish Gordon Beckham well, but it seems to me that a lot of folks are putting an awful lot of hope in him not to mention pressure on his shoulders to perform at this level. With that said, if he can merely pick up the ball and throw it to first we will be much improved over Wilson Betemit.

It stinks to continue losing to unknown pitchers.The confidence we were able to gain/create from the past couple of weeks has evaporated so far this week against the A’s mighty pitching duo. We need a strong effort from Mark tomorrow and a few timely hits from our offense to regain the swagger that was starting to develop.

Ozzie must be feeling a lot of pressure himself to resort to a tirade supporting his decision to play Wise over Anderson. The take I get from reading his comments is basically ” Screw you, I’m the Manager and if you don’t like it, tough”. I know Ozzie has always been outspoken and is very loyal to his players, but that comment is over the line. It is the fans who support not only him, but his team and I think we deserve a more complete answer than, ” turn off the TV when he (Wise) bats”.

So, there is no joy in Mudville tonight: Sox lost, Ozzie’s in a funk, fans are miserable and bickering at one another again, and it’s June and the weather is still too cold for the Boys to play. Maybe instead of moving to Glendale from Tucson, the Sox should have started training in Nome, Alaska. They could have taken their frigid cuts against the Inuits and gotten ready for “Summer” in the City vs. the dangerous Oakland A’s pitching staff.

But, all the above moaning and hand wringing will be meaningless after we win a couple of games. Let’s start that tomorrow. Night all…………Go Sox’09…..j.k.

Mark, I don’t think I ever said that Kenny has not made any mistakes. He’s made plenty, and has admitted to most of them.

The Sox bench has been weak but a lot of that comes from the stupid idea to carry 12 pitchers and leave only 3 position players plus a backup catcher on the bench — and that is when everyone is healthy which has rarely happened this year.

While the bench has been weak, almost all of the losses that you refer to that may come back and haunt the Sox can squarely be placed on the starters — the 8 on the field, Thome and the starting pitchers. I’ll give the bullpen its due for being one of the best in the American League, if not the best.

Quentin started hot but then got hurt and has been silent and now is out. Until Pods started heating things up recently, there was little or no production from center or from left. Dye and Konerko have been good but have had little help. Fields is a mess. Ramirez started very, very, very slowly. Getz is a kid that is learning how to play in the bigs and he also has fought some nagging injuries. AJ has been good offensively but with the world’s worst pitching staff when it comes to holding on runners, his defensive weaknesses have been very exposed.

I applaud Kenny for what he has done but I am not president of the Kenny fan club. While he did a good job in assembling the ’05 club, I give 99 percent of the credit for that championship season to the players and Ozzie and his staff.

And while they could have made more moves in the off season, I still say that Willy Taveras, Coco Crisp or Orlando Hudson would not have made a significant difference. If they were THAT good, then they would have been scooped up by other teams long before they eventually signed. And Pods in the last month has played very bit as good as either one of those outfielders you continually mention. And for a lot less money.

What this team needs more than anything is starting pitching. While I agree that Peavy was not the answer (if he’s afraid to pitch in the AL, I don’t want him), this team needs another good starter and probably two. The young guys in the system are not ready and Contreras and Colon are injuries waiting to happen.

But considering all the nagging injuries they have had, the fact that their MVP candidate from last year has been out for weeks, the way that they have not hit on any kind of consistent basis, the start that Floyd had — well, I’m very pleased to see them just two games under .500 and within striking distance of first place.

I’m just hoping that Beckham can give them a spark and a lift and that somehow, some way, Colon and Contreras can piece together 10 or a dozen wins between them until the trading deadline and that Kenny can find some pitching help for the rotation.

A lot of ifs, but baseball is a game of ifs.

So Beckham is here. I like it. I am of the opinion that if you are good you will be good no matter what level. I wish him nothing but the best.

I think we missed one opportunity though. the Braves traded 3 minor leaguers for Nate McLouth. that would have been a nice addition in my opinion. Anyway lets get the split tomorrow (always expect to split 4 game series) and go on to knock around cleveland before overtaking first place after the 5 game set with the tigers! Big week coming up! lets go!

KenWo

As everyone else, I hope Beckam does well now that he is getting a shot. Also glad to see Betemit go. 1.3 million because (to quote Oz) “he’s a great kid”. My grandson is a great kid but nobody is paying him 1.3M!
Very revealing comment last night coming home from the game after yet another lackluster offensive effort. Seriously, Oz says thankfully that Beckam will now be here, so he can give Josh Fields a chance at DH, and that he (Oz) can give Jim Thome some rest. I know Thome is a great guy, blah, blah, blah.
WTF!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Thome makes what, $12M/year? Folks that works out to approx $80K/game (or better yet $20K/at bat) AND HE NEEDS TO BE RESTED? For Christ Sake all he does is show up and bat four times a game (and I’m sure by year end as he has the last two years will again lead the SOX in strikeouts) and collect $80K. The days he’s rested we pay him $80K to just sit on his ***! As my bride pointed out, for $12M/year I’d do just about anything unless it was illegal or immoral (and for that amount of money maybe even anything wheteher it was legal or moral or not!).

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