Gordon Beckham was out of the White Sox’s lineup yesterday and Ozzie Guillen indicated that he may opt to shut him down for the season rather than let him try to continue playing through a hand injury:
Obviously he wants to play, but I’ve seen this kid swing the bat for a year and a half and I know his hand is not even 80 percent. He’s wasting at-bats. He’s not 100 percent out there to try to help us, and that’s why I shut it down for a couple of days to see how the treatment gets him back. The problem with that is you feel good one day then one swing it comes back again.
Unfortunately for Beckham the hand injury has ruined what was shaping up to be a very nice turnaround following a slow start to the season. He hit just .209 with a measly .561 OPS through the end of June, but then batted .331 with a .941 OPS in July and August before struggling through the hand problems this month.
Beckham’s overall numbers are ugly, with a .252/.317/.378 line representing a drop in production of about 20 percent from his strong rookie campaign, but he showed enough to think that a bounceback season is on tap for 2011 if healthy.
Dodgers third baseman Justin Turner left Monday’s Cactus League game against the Athletics after he was hit by a pitch. He went for X-rays, revealing that he suffered a broken wrist, Bill Shaikin of the Los Angeles Times reports. Shaikin adds that Turner is unlikely to return before May, noting that Braves first baseman Freddie Freeman missed six weeks with a similar injury last year and Astros outfielder George Springer missed nine weeks in 2015.
Needless to say, this is a huge loss for the Dodgers. Last year, Turner hit .322/.415/.530 with 21 home runs and 71 RBI in 543 plate appearances, helping the Dodgers reach the World Series. He made the All-Star team for the first time in his career and finished eighth in NL MVP balloting.
Thankfully, the Dodgers have some versatile players on the roster. Logan Forsythe could move from second base to third, giving Chase Utley more playing time at second. Enrique Hernandez could man the hot corner as well. Chris Taylor has played some third base, or he could shift to second base in Forsythe’s stead. The club should shed some light on how it plans to move forward following Turner’s injury.