FUTURE IS NOW
Let’s face it, this team may be good enough to win the division, (hopefully) but that may be it. They still have some serious questions that need to be answered and with any bit of luck, Gordon Beckham will be one step in the right direction. Why is Gordon here? Well Josh Fields lack of offense is a big reason for that. If Josh continues at his current pace, he’ll finish with: 7 Homeruns, 68 RBIs, .244 batting average, and over 180 strikeouts (as he currently leads the team in that statistic). After discussing the Beckham call up and Josh Fields inability to hit with a friend of mine, he went on to say…
“Beckham could do that left handed…” (He’s not even a switch hitter)
That may be a little far fetched, but Kenny and Ozzie figure it can’t get much worse than 180 strikeouts. Beckham batted over .400 at the University of Georgia with 28 homeruns. He has cruised through the White Sox farm system and now has arrived 365 days later after being drafted last June. Gordon is not going to turn this around; he’s not the savior; he doesn’t have magic beans; but he’s proven that he can hit in any level, and it was time to bring him to the South Side of Chicago. Beckham is just one step in the right direction. The Sox still need another starter. They say don’t sell the farm, don’t give up on prospects, but however you look at it, they still need a big time guy. Gavin Floyd seems to be back on track, but will it last?; John Danks has been decent, but still turned down a recent contract offer; Jose Contreras is a free agent after this year, and who knows if he will return to form; Bartolo Colon has shown he can still pitch consistently, just not over errors in the field; and Clayton Richard has shown he can be a reliable 5 th starter, but I am not sold on him and would throw him into any deal to land another ace. Can Sox really count on Contreras, Colon and Richard? Do you trust these guys? If you’re answer is yes, then we have a problem.
You always want to be proved wrong, but long term, these guys are not the answer. With that being said, Brian Anderson and Dewayne Wise aren’t the answer in centerfield either. Next week is the draft (June 9 th – 11 th) and the Sox have 5 picks within the first 102. Their Double A is loaded with talented pitchers and position players and those 5 picks should add more talent to the fishing pool. It all starts with Beckham. He will get his at-bats with the Sox. They didn’t bring him to ride the bench. Where will be play? That remains to be seen, but he will be in the line-up everyday as it’s up to him to take advantage of this situation.
My thoughts: The Sox have some talented players; Fields, Beckham, Alexei Ramirez, Chris Getz and Jayson Nix. So, who is the odd man out? Josh Fields. Nix and Getz for now, give a nice offensive righty/lefty match up at the plate. Alexei has shown flashes with the glove, the bat, and provides speed and shortstop. And now Beckham is given the opportunity to play and that means it will more than likely be at 3rd base.
Regardless of who’s in the line-up or who’s on the mound, summer time is here, and it’s time to start winning.
By Brian Gioia
> View all of the 2009 MLB team previews from Pro Baseball Fans