The latest Gordon Beckham spin

At this point, following the machinations of public discussion of Gordon Beckham is like finishing the final seasons of Dexter. It's long since stopped being a compelling pursuit for answers, or even a foolishly idealist search for a long-term solution of what's clearly a fatal flaw. To be honest, it's just a disjointed mess at this point and has contradicted its own constructs numerous times.

But if they're going to keep churning out content, let's at least see where they end up.

Rick Hahn offered a revealing look on the Gordon Beckham signing that Doug Padilla captured Tuesday. Hahn basically goes through the same thought process that we all went through here at TCS, then pushed his Beckham anxiety and signed himself a passable fifth infielder.

I told his agent, and I told him, that if his name had been Joe Smith, or I had been in Atlanta and had the exact same roster, we probably would have called him the minute he was non-tendered because his skill set was a fit. But I didn’t place that call because I didn’t think this was necessarily right fit for Gordon Beckham.
— Rick Hahn

The "right fit for Gordon Beckham" bit is a familiar management feint for anyone who's ever had a boss, and knows that their concern for whether a job is the "right fit" for you is only a polite presentation of feelings that are vice versa. With Emilio Bonifacio and J.B. Shuck in tow, the Sox were in the market for a fifth infielder. For that, Beckham is qualified (remember, it was Leury Garcia in this role last year) if you're confident that he can actually stay restrained to it. I have little to no confidence in he can, but Hahn has moved past that doubt. He's actually running the team and can order Ventura to deploy Beckham in a certain way and try to stave off his transition to mediocre overpaid crutch. Placing faith in that is a good way to only freak about his signing for seven weeks instead of 10.

Then, things get funny.

Indeed Hahn took into account the added mental strains that would come with returning to a former team, when getting a fresh start elsewhere seemed to be the better idea.

But other factors seemed to be in play as well, presumably the fact that Beckham’s six weeks with the Angels might have been the break he needed, and that being free from the responsibility of playing everyday would help him to maintain his swing
— Doug Padilla

Nearly every time the Sox push out a bench player to the plate, and I happen to be listening to the radio, Darrin Jackson reiterates how difficult it is to hit without the benefit of regular plate appearances. He emphasizes that hitting is about rhythm and routine, and that despite how many simulations are available and how much practice time players log these days, it's impossible to recreate when you're not making four trips to the plate in real game action every day. I'm sure he's right, but he lays it on so thick that by the time the first pitch is coming I'm wondering why the Sox bothered to shove this hopeless bastard to the plate just to be humiliated.

With Beckham nearing 3000 MLB plate appearances, we've moved way beyond reminding how young he is, comparing him to other late-bloomers, and asking for more time to develop. We're even farther away from dreams of sending him back down to the minors to "learn how to deal with failure," so now we're just hoping disparate playing time agrees with him somehow because nothing else has, and because "full-time Gordon Beckham" doesn't agree with anyone.


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