Chicago White Sox' Gordon Beckham Starting To Play Like Franchise Player

By Matt Malecha
Gordon Beckham Chicago White Sox
Jesse Johnson-USA TODAY Sports

When the Chicago White Sox first drafted Gordon Beckham in the first round of the 2008 MLB Draft, most thought the White Sox had found their future star.

The former Georgia Bulldog was very highly touted coming out of college and he quickly weaved his way through the Sox farm system, making his major league debut in 2009. And although he only played about three quarters of the 2009 season, Beckham still managed to hit 14 home runs and drive in 63 runs, making the already high expectations given to him reach a level that was almost impossible for him to live up to.

Unfortunately, that’s exactly what happened. Beckham struggled to produce from the plate each of the next two seasons, driving in a combined 93 runs in 281 games played. And although he started to be mentioned among the top defensive second basemen in MLB last year, Beckham still couldn’t find the swing that made him the eighth-overall pick back in 2008.

So, heading into this season, most, if not all Sox fans had given up hope of Beckham being “the guy” and some even thought it was time to part ways with the 26-year-old infielder.

Thankfully, at least for now, the South Siders hung on to their once promising second baseman.

Besides a trip to the DL in the early part of the year, Beckham has arguably been Chicago’s top player. His defense, of course, has been spectacular, but surprisingly to most, his bat has been almost better. With a triple-slash line of .341/.367/.432, Beckham is finally putting up numbers that represent the promise he showed a few years ago.

For the White Sox, the timing of Beckham’s recent success is perfect. Although most Sox fans don’t want to accept it, Paul Konerko is most likely playing his last season on the South Side. Whether he signs with another team in the offseason or decides to retire is still a mystery, but chances are “Pauly” will not be in a White Sox uniform in 2014.

What will Konerko’s departure mean to the team that he’s led for almost 10 years now? A lack of a true franchise player and a leader in the clubhouse. Who could fill this void? Gordon Beckham.

Beckham is very well respected in the Sox clubhouse, and if he can keep producing like he has so far in 2013, the White Sox may have found their new captain.


Matt Malecha is a Chicago White Sox writer for Follow him on Twitter @MattMalecha and add him to your network on Google.

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