Beckham drives in 2 in Sox’ win, says rumors aren’t issue
BY DARYL VAN SCHOUWEN Staff Reporter July 12, 2014 10:14PM
Gordon Beckham hits a double to drive in two runs in the ninth inning of the Sox’ 6-2 victory over the Indians on Saturday. | Jason Miller/Getty Images
Updated: August 14, 2014 6:49AM
CLEVELAND — Gordon Beckham knows the deal. He knows this might not be his last season, or month, in the uniform of the only team he has played for. Through good times and — like the last 30 days — bad, he is taking it all in stride.
Beckham was back in the White Sox’ lineup Saturday after manager Robin Ventura speculated that trade rumors might be affecting his second baseman. Beckham said that’s not the case, but he used the day off to step back, recharge a little and work through some things on his swing.
It looked like a good move by Ventura after Beckham (1-for-3 with a walk) tacked on the Sox’ fourth and fifth runs with a two-run double down the third-base line in a 6-2 win over the Indians. Beckham went into the game fighting a 1-for-30 slump over his previous seven games and a 13-for-99 rut over his last 26.
‘‘It’s been frustrating for me,’’ said Beckham, whose average has dipped to .237. ‘‘I’ve been pressing a little bit. Your at-bats become worse, and it’s one of those things you have to cut the cord with whatever has happened and not take it into each day.’’
Beckham took flips and batting practice Friday.
‘‘Mentally, it was good,’’ he said. ‘‘I did some work that I felt was good work that was going to kind of get me back in the right spot, so it definitely showed [the day off] was the right choice. I felt a lot more comfortable at the plate today.’’
Ventura postulated Friday that trade rumors were getting into Beckham’s head. Beckham wasn’t so sure about that.
‘‘They’re out there, but I wouldn’t say it’s affecting my play,’’ he said. ‘‘It’s maybe one of those things where everyone deals with it in their own way. I would maintain that I’m not too worried about that. Whatever is going to happen is going to happen.’’
The Sox have depth in their minor-league system at second base, which likely makes Beckham expendable for the right deal. Micah Johnson is playing in the Futures Game on Sunday in Minneapolis. Carlos Sanchez, also a rising talent and one who probably makes Beckham expendable, was expected to arrive from Class AAA Charlotte on Saturday night to take Andre Rienzo’s place on the roster. How long Sanchez would stick around is unclear, but Beckham remains unfazed. He has gone about his work as if nothing has changed or will.
‘‘Obviously I would really like to stay here,’’ he said. ‘‘But the White Sox are going to do what’s best for them, and that’s something I’m OK with. I understand how the game works. I understand where I’m at in my career, and I get that.’’
Beckham is the sixth-highest-paid Sox at $4,175,000 this season. He is eligible for free agency after next season, so the Sox are not under pressure to move him now.
He isn’t alone as one who might not finish the season with the Sox. Almost all veterans with trade value have heard their names come up. That is, if they’re paying attention.
‘‘To be honest with you, I don’t even follow it,’’ said left-hander John Danks, who’s in the third year of a five-year, $65 million contract that has him on the very top of the Sox 2014 payroll. ‘‘I don’t know what’s been said, and that’s the honest truth. I don’t worry about things I have no control over, and that falls in that category. Obviously I’d love to stay here, but it’s a business, it’s a game, and if something happens, we’ll deal with it then. But I’m not concerned about it at all.’’