Bad pitches getting best of White Sox’ Gordon Beckham
BY DARYL VAN SCHOUWEN email@example.com August 19, 2011 9:14PM
Updated: November 16, 2011 1:25AM
It’s no big secret what’s holding Gordon Beckham back from being a productive piece in the White Sox lineup: The second baseman is chasing bad pitches, usually high or away.
“I wanted to break everything in the bat rack,’’ Beckham said Friday about his 0-for-4 night in a 4-2 loss to Cleveland the night before.
“I still have a lot of time. I have to find a way to help this team. We have a chance to win the division. This is not about me, it’s about winning.’’
Beckham, who took a .238 average in the series opener Friday against the Texas Rangers, was 3-for-24 in the last seven games. He left four runners in scoring position Thursday, and couldn’t get Brent Morel in from third with no outs when he grounded to third in the second inning Friday.
“My swings are great, my BP is good,’’ Beckham said of his pregame preparation. “It’s a matter of getting good pitches to hit and hitting them well instead of fouling them off — and laying off bad pitches. It’s frustrating. I had a chance to help my team win [Thursday] and couldn’t do anything. But I can’t feel sorry for myself.’’
These are trying times for Beckham — and pivotal ones at that. General manager Ken Williams said it’s not too soon to say that Beckham is at a crossroads in his career.
“Because with his current approach they’re going to continue to expose his weakness,’’ Williams said. “I liked the swing coming out of the University of Georgia, the one that we saw when he first got to the big leagues, where he was able to drive the ball and pound it into the right-center field gap. And any high fastball, he could get on top if it with his top hand. But again, as the general manager, you have to respect the work that your coaches do and you have to respect the desire from the player as to what he thinks will work.
“It doesn’t matter what I think,” Williams added. “It’s what he takes from that on-deck circle to the plate with the most confidence that’s going to ultimately yield his failures or successes. I liked the swagger and the cock that he had of his wrists and the loading of his hands when he had the previous swing I spoke of.’’