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View Full Version : Do you agree with Beckham at 2nd base?


chisoxfanatic
01-29-2010, 10:30 PM
I was talking with a colleague the other day about how much I do not support Ozzie's decision to play Gordon at 2nd when that was a position where Alexei seemed to really thrive. He was most definitely a better 2nd baseman than SS by a considerable margin. Meanwhile, Gordon was a starter at SS in college. For the life of me, I still cannot understand why Ozzie won't just put Alexei where he looked comfortable and Gordon where he had his collegiate experience.

Do you support Ozzie's decision? I'm a bit worried about our middle infield here.

DirtySox
01-29-2010, 10:34 PM
Gordon never profiled as a decent major league shortstop. The majority of scouts saw him as a future second basemen. He wasn't all that special playing short in college or the minors. Alexei possesses the ability to play a much better SS. People just get caught up in his mental lapses and convince themselves he is bad at the position.

guillen4life13
01-29-2010, 10:37 PM
Alexei's primary position in Cuba was SS and he was touted as being major league quality.

As far as defense when it comes to SS, I will defer to Ozzie since he himself has won a Gold Glove and was a damn good fielder.

chisoxfanatic
01-29-2010, 10:38 PM
Gordon never profiled as a decent major league shortstop. The majority of scouts saw him as a future second basemen. He wasn't all that special playing short in college or the minors. Alexei possesses the ability to play a much better SS. People just get caught up in his mental lapses and convince themselves he is bad at the position.
The unfortunate thing is that he seemed to have an abundance of them. He's ok fielding the ball imho; but, I really hope that he is working on the throw to first...I won't lie to you, I've cringed when seeing him make that throw to first.

hi im skot
01-29-2010, 10:41 PM
I was talking with a colleague the other day about how much I do not support Ozzie's decision to play Gordon at 2nd when that was a position where Alexei seemed to really thrive. He was most definitely a better 2nd baseman than SS by a considerable margin. Meanwhile, Gordon was a starter at SS in college. For the life of me, I still cannot understand why Ozzie won't just put Alexei where he looked comfortable and Gordon where he had his collegiate experience.

Do you support Ozzie's decision? I'm a bit worried about our middle infield here.

Not sure how you can say "definitely".

Ramirez pissed me off many times at short last season, but he looked more comfortable in the second half.

chisoxfanatic
01-29-2010, 10:45 PM
Not sure how you can say "definitely".

Ramirez pissed me off many times at short last season, but he looked more comfortable in the second half.
I say that, because I never remember myself being so pissed off at those throws to first in '08.

soxinem1
01-29-2010, 10:48 PM
I agree that he might not be a SS in the long run, but I thought he really progressed defensively at 3B as the season wore on.

To move a hitter like him to make room for Teahen is the bigger issue. If we picked up a real 3B that was one thing, but to move him for a real question 'Mark' is still puzzling, IMHO.

hi im skot
01-29-2010, 10:49 PM
I say that, because I never remember myself being so pissed off at those throws to first in '08.

That doesn't make him better; a throw from second to first is a heck of a lot different than a throw from short.

TDog
01-29-2010, 10:52 PM
... The majority of scouts saw him as a future second basemen. ...

The majority wasn't merely more than half. It was consensus. When Beckham was in college, I was reading that he had a future in baseball, but not at shortstop.

asindc
01-29-2010, 10:53 PM
I agree that he might not be a SS in the long run, but I thought he really progressed defensively at 3B as the season wore on.

To move a hitter like him to make room for Teahen is the bigger issue. If we picked up a real 3B that was one thing, but to move him for a real question 'Mark' is still puzzling, IMHO.

I would rather have Beckham at 2B than Teahan.

soxinem1
01-29-2010, 10:56 PM
I would rather have Beckham at 2B than Teahan.

I'd rather not have Teahen at all.

Bacon at 3B and Getz at 2B > Bacon at 2B and Teahen at 3B.

hi im skot
01-29-2010, 11:01 PM
I'd rather not have Teahen at all.

Bacon at 3B and Getz at 2B > Bacon at 2B and Teahen at 3B.

I like Getz, but I'm interested to see what Teahen can do.

BadBobbyJenks
01-29-2010, 11:04 PM
I'd rather not have Teahen at all.

Bacon at 3B and Getz at 2B > Bacon at 2B and Teahen at 3B.

Getz is a neat little player, but I will guess he ends up as a bench player the majority of his career.

Frater Perdurabo
01-29-2010, 11:05 PM
I liked Beckham better at 3B, but I think the overall plan right now is to have Teahen keep the hot corner lukewarm until Morel is ready. Of course, KW wouldn't hesitate to deal Morel to improve the team immediately. And I think the Sox see Alexei as the SS for the better part of the next decade.

Daver
01-29-2010, 11:06 PM
The majority wasn't merely more than half. It was consensus. When Beckham was in college, I was reading that he had a future in baseball, but not at shortstop.

He doesn't move to his right well enough to be an above average SS, the same can be said for second base, and his arm is wasted at second as well.

VMSNS
01-29-2010, 11:07 PM
Beckham will be fine at 2B. As most have already said, he was never predicted to be a MLB-quality SS. Also, look no further than his last season at 3B as proof that he's an adaptable player. His improvement at the hot corner was very noticeable at the end of the season. Since his natural position is SS, those skill-sets are much more applicable to 2B than 3B, so his transition from short to second will be much easier for him.

Personally, I would have preferred that the Sox let Beckham develop at 3B and acquire a 2B instead, like Polanco or Orlando Hudson. But, the current situation will work out fine, I think.

veeter
01-29-2010, 11:18 PM
I was talking with a colleague the other day about how much I do not support Ozzie's decision to play Gordon at 2nd when that was a position where Alexei seemed to really thrive. He was most definitely a better 2nd baseman than SS by a considerable margin. Meanwhile, Gordon was a starter at SS in college. For the life of me, I still cannot understand why Ozzie won't just put Alexei where he looked comfortable and Gordon where he had his collegiate experience.

Do you support Ozzie's decision? I'm a bit worried about our middle infield here.I'm pretty sure it's Ozzie's AND Kenny's decision. I like the thought of Gordon at second base. It's the easier of the two. To me, it paves the way for him to be an offensive force. I think he'll adapt very quickly. As I ripped Alexei last year, someone pointed out to me just how inexpensive he is. For the money, Alexei's a steal. I'm hopeful he'll have his head in the game all season long in 2010. If so, he'll do very well.

WhiteSox1989
01-29-2010, 11:23 PM
I think he'll be fine at 2B.

chisoxfanatic
01-29-2010, 11:27 PM
I'm pretty sure it's Ozzie's AND Kenny's decision. I like the thought of Gordon at second base. It's the easier of the two. To me, it paves the way for him to be an offensive force. I think he'll adapt very quickly. As I ripped Alexei last year, someone pointed out to me just how inexpensive he is. For the money, Alexei's a steal. I'm hopeful he'll have his head in the game all season long in 2010. If so, he'll do very well.
Granted I've never played baseball, I have never understood why people make claims that playing a certain position should lead to them being a stronger hitter. Is there actual truth to this? I've always thought that it doesn't matter what position someone plays (other than maybe catcher, which is the most strenuous position, I'd imagine), that they'd hit the same way...Would someone who actually played be able to explain this to me?

DumpJerry
01-29-2010, 11:29 PM
Granted I've never played baseball, I have never understood why people make claims that playing a certain position should lead to them being a stronger hitter. Is there actual truth to this? I've always thought that it doesn't matter what position someone plays (other than maybe catcher, which is the most strenuous position, I'd imagine), that they'd hit the same way...Would someone who actually played be able to explain this to me?
It's a conventional wisdom some people buy into. I feel if you have a good mix of hitters in your lineup, does it matter which positions they play in the other half of the inning?

TheVulture
01-29-2010, 11:34 PM
...and his arm is wasted at second as well.

I disagree - a good arm is never a waste when turning a double play and the play up the middle where the second baseman is running behind second towards the outfield directly away from firstbase is one the toughest throws in baseball. Then you have the relays to 3rd and home - a good arm is definitely not a waste at 2b.

voodoochile
01-29-2010, 11:34 PM
I'd rather not have Teahen at all.

Bacon at 3B and Getz at 2B > Bacon at 2B and Teahen at 3B.

If Teahen does nothing but match his career numbers he'll post an OPS 70 points higher than Getz. I actually expect Teahen's numbers to go up because he should hit more HR at USCF.

Getz bring nothing but speed to the table. He's a below average hitter otherwise.

I love the move all around. I think it's going to really solidify our IF for several years and I expect TCM to make some people go WOW this year...

Brian26
01-29-2010, 11:36 PM
I'd rather not have Teahen at all.

Bacon at 3B and Getz at 2B > Bacon at 2B and Teahen at 3B.

I like Getz, but I'm interested to see what Teahen can do.

Kenny pretty much laid it on the table at Soxfest and stated that there were concerns about Getz' ability to stay healthy for an entire season. I'm not surprised he's gone.

chisoxfanatic
01-29-2010, 11:38 PM
It's a conventional wisdom some people buy into. I feel if you have a good mix of hitters in your lineup, does it matter which positions they play in the other half of the inning?
I come from the school of thought that thinks the most important thing a team in any sport can have is a good defense, and the rest will fall in place from there. In baseball, of course I'd consider the pitcher to be part of that. If someone's a decent hitter, and then they are notorious for causing bad errors, then couldn't the two very well nullify each other?

Then again, two of my three favorite athletes in sports history have been known for their defense (Brent Seabrook and Robin Ventura), so you can see that defense is something I value more than offense. :smile:

chisoxfanatic
01-29-2010, 11:43 PM
I love the move all around. I think it's going to really solidify our IF for several years and I expect TCM to make some people go WOW this year...
I think it was recently posted here that TCM is working on becoming a switch-hitter, as he was one in his previous ball playing days. Did anyone who was at Sox Fest get to ask or hear about him working on that throw to first as well? That's my only concern, albiet a major one, for his defensive game...I do think he could've looked even worse if it weren't for Paulie digging a bunch of his errant throws out of the dirt.

CWSpalehoseCWS
01-29-2010, 11:56 PM
I'm more comfortable with Beckham at 2B then 3rd, and I don't mind Alexei at SS. All he needs is to get more focused and he'll cut down those errors. He isn't that bad of a fielder and he did have his moments last year. I'm sure he'll be fine with a year under his belt.

asindc
01-30-2010, 12:02 AM
Granted I've never played baseball, I have never understood why people make claims that playing a certain position should lead to them being a stronger hitter. Is there actual truth to this? I've always thought that it doesn't matter what position someone plays (other than maybe catcher, which is the most strenuous position, I'd imagine), that they'd hit the same way...Would someone who actually played be able to explain this to me?

I don't think it is literally about playing a certain position that makes someone a stronger hitter. I think it is because it is more likely that you can find on the open market that kind of offensive production at 3B than 2B, so when you have someone who can play both, you move him to 2B. If he produces as expected, Beckham's production will be higher above average for a 2B than it would be for a 3B.

voodoochile
01-30-2010, 12:06 AM
I don't think it is literally about playing a certain position that makes someone a stronger hitter. I think it is because it is more likely that you can find on the open market that kind of offensive production at 3B than 2B, so when you have someone who can play both, you move him to 2B. If he produces as expected, Beckham's production will be higher above average for a 2B than it would be for a 3B.

There's also something to be said for player comfort. If a player is comfortable defensively then all they need to do when they bat is hit. They won't be dwelling as often on the play they screwed up and have it affect their hitting too. So at times playing one position over another will lead to better offensive results. That's something else people are talking about with Teahen, that being locked in at 3B will lead to him being more comfortable and producing better at the plate.

asindc
01-30-2010, 12:06 AM
I'd rather not have Teahen at all.

Bacon at 3B and Getz at 2B > Bacon at 2B and Teahen at 3B.

I would prefer someone better than Teahan at 3B as well, but I disagree otherwise. IMO...

Beckham at 2B and Teahan at 3B > Getz at 2B and Beckham at 3B.


I like Getz, love his speed, but Teahan will produce more offensively and I think he will be a wash defensively at worst.

Dub25
01-30-2010, 01:38 AM
I was talking with a colleague the other day about how much I do not support Ozzie's decision to play Gordon at 2nd when that was a position where Alexei seemed to really thrive. He was most definitely a better 2nd baseman than SS by a considerable margin. Meanwhile, Gordon was a starter at SS in college. For the life of me, I still cannot understand why Ozzie won't just put Alexei where he looked comfortable and Gordon where he had his collegiate experience.

Do you support Ozzie's decision? I'm a bit worried about our middle infield here.

I voted no. Maybe this team has 2 second basemen. My problem is, and Beckham mentioned it in a interview, Alexei still doesn't know english. Before everyone jumps on me, my point is, the SS is the captain of the infield. I want my captain of the infield to be able to understand english. Last year, besides the routine play, Alexei didn't know what to do on throws from the outfield. A lot of times there were cuts when the throw should've gone through and times where it should've been cut. So, who is the one yelling cut? Either Paulie in the middle of the infield or AJ. I'm going to side with them and say they were doing the job. Alexei???

oeo
01-30-2010, 02:02 AM
Moving a player, especially one like Beckham, is not an Ozzie decision, it's an organizational decision. This was likely the plan the day he was drafted.

For the record, I think Alexei will be a much better SS than Beckham would ever be. He was pretty good in the latter part of the year.

Nellie_Fox
01-30-2010, 02:03 AM
How much English do you need to know to understand (or yell) CUT!?

Dub25
01-30-2010, 02:09 AM
How much English do you need to know to understand (or yell) CUT!?

Not sure... ask Alexei...

Nellie_Fox
01-30-2010, 02:21 AM
Not sure... ask Alexei...My point was that I think that's nonsense.

MarkZ35
01-30-2010, 02:22 AM
I voted no. Maybe this team has 2 second basemen. My problem is, and Beckham mentioned it in a interview, Alexei still doesn't know english. Before everyone jumps on me, my point is, the SS is the captain of the infield. I want my captain of the infield to be able to understand english. Last year, besides the routine play, Alexei didn't know what to do on throws from the outfield. A lot of times there were cuts when the throw should've gone through and times where it should've been cut. So, who is the one yelling cut? Either Paulie in the middle of the infield or AJ. I'm going to side with them and say they were doing the job. Alexei???
I agree and I disagree. I played college ball with a Dominican SS and to say the least it was hell at times because until he learned basic english words he was useless to verbal communication. Also becoming familiar as the season went on you'll adjust to how your teammates play. So Alexei does need to learn the difference between words like cut or 2nd, 3rd, etc. but I would like to believe he already does.

As far as the cuts, it is usually called by the player at the base the throw is going to. So if the cut is going to third on a normal cut, Teahan would be the one yelling cut or let it go through because he is at the base the throw is going to. Most teams practice only yelling cut if there is no play or cut if the throw is going off line otherwise if the throw is in line with the base nobody will yell anything. As far as leading the infield, PK and AJ are in charge of that. Maybe when PK is done playing 1B, Alexei will be ready to become the captain of the infielders.

Many great infielders have had language barriers but you have to learn to play with each other and adjust.

CWSpalehoseCWS
01-30-2010, 03:24 AM
I voted no. Maybe this team has 2 second basemen. My problem is, and Beckham mentioned it in a interview, Alexei still doesn't know english. Before everyone jumps on me, my point is, the SS is the captain of the infield. I want my captain of the infield to be able to understand english. Last year, besides the routine play, Alexei didn't know what to do on throws from the outfield. A lot of times there were cuts when the throw should've gone through and times where it should've been cut. So, who is the one yelling cut? Either Paulie in the middle of the infield or AJ. I'm going to side with them and say they were doing the job. Alexei???

I agree with you, that Alexei needs to learn basic English if he is going to get any better.

But, in all fairness, if Alexei is unwilling, or incapable of learning English, would it really be that hard for some of the other infielders to learn a few words of Spanish to maybe make it easier? I'm not saying they should, or be required to in any way, but if that's the only way these blunders are corrected, than so be it.

oeo
01-30-2010, 05:38 AM
I agree with you, that Alexei needs to learn basic English if he is going to get any better.

But, in all fairness, if Alexei is unwilling, or incapable of learning English, would it really be that hard for some of the other infielders to learn a few words of Spanish to maybe make it easier? I'm not saying they should, or be required to in any way, but if that's the only way these blunders are corrected, than so be it.

I can't imagine Alexei doesn't know baseball terms in English. Some of it is probably the same, anyway.

voodoochile
01-30-2010, 09:15 AM
How hard would it be for guys like Beckham and Teahen to learn the Spanish equivalents of these basic words?

Tres, Dos, cortar, mio. Problem solved... Next!

That's three, two, cut and me (mine) for the language impaired...

Communication goes both ways. If a guy has the skills (and Ramirez does) then you learn to communicate with him. Make it a team building exercise.

I just hope Ozzie gives the expected starting IF lots of PT this spring so they can get used to working together in their new positions.

asindc
01-30-2010, 10:03 AM
I voted no. Maybe this team has 2 second basemen. My problem is, and Beckham mentioned it in a interview, Alexei still doesn't know english. Before everyone jumps on me, my point is, the SS is the captain of the infield. I want my captain of the infield to be able to understand english. Last year, besides the routine play, Alexei didn't know what to do on throws from the outfield. A lot of times there were cuts when the throw should've gone through and times where it should've been cut. So, who is the one yelling cut? Either Paulie in the middle of the infield or AJ. I'm going to side with them and say they were doing the job. Alexei???

I find it inconceivable that Alexei has not learned a few basic baseball terms in English in the two years he has been playing in the majors. Perhaps it is plausible, but I just don't see it.

Save McCuddy's
01-30-2010, 10:31 AM
English as a second language aside, I would feel better with our best baseball IQ at short given that there is negligible difference between the defensive prowess of the two choices we have.

While Alexei appears to profile better at the position athletically, there is no good reason why a 27 yr old who has played short for the majority of his career would butcher the position as badly as he did last year. Mental laoses and poor throws hurt the team a lot less at 2b than short.

I would be giving Bacon a chance at short and returning Alexei to second.

tstrike2000
01-30-2010, 11:07 AM
I voted yes because Beckham seems to have the athleticism and smarts to be successful at 2B. Alexei's a good to very good SS unless he gets lax out there.

beasly213
01-30-2010, 02:02 PM
Yes I support it. I think everyone thought Alexei played such a great second base in 08 was because of the spectacular plays he made there. However when it came to the routine plays he made a lot of the same dumb error and reads on balls that he did when playing SS.

Alexeis range is amazing and SS is the right position for him. He just needs to stop the mental mistakes and he'll be fine at short.

As for Beckham, I think 2nd is the best position for him to thrive. Second isn't as hard as third base to play defensively so Becks can concentrate more on his work at the plate.

russ99
01-30-2010, 03:00 PM
English as a second language aside, I would feel better with our best baseball IQ at short given that there is negligible difference between the defensive prowess of the two choices we have.

While Alexei appears to profile better at the position athletically, there is no good reason why a 27 yr old who has played short for the majority of his career would butcher the position as badly as he did last year. Mental laoses and poor throws hurt the team a lot less at 2b than short.

I would be giving Bacon a chance at short and returning Alexei to second.

I really wish there was a source to see all the plays of a player over a few months or a whole season.

Alexei didn't butcher the position. You are looking at the 20 errors and not his overall play for the rest of the 220 putouts and 420 assists.

The fact is he's a top 5 SS in range, and the rest will come with maturity, more playing time and especially having Omar Vizquel to be his day-to-day mentor.

You don't move a guy like that, especially one who holds his own with the bat, to another position just for stupid fantasy baseball comparisons and the uselessness (in the real MLB) of VORP.

There may be a good argument for Teahen at 2B and Beckham at 3B, but not for moving Alexei, especially based on defense.

mshawks
01-30-2010, 04:37 PM
I agree with you, that Alexei needs to learn basic English if he is going to get any better.




The same could be said for Ozzie

GoGoCrede
01-30-2010, 04:44 PM
I can't imagine Alexei doesn't know baseball terms in English. Some of it is probably the same, anyway.

I agree with this. For all we know, his English skills are perfect when it comes to baseball terms. I think it's unfair to judge that he would automatically become a better player if only he learned more English words when we don't know for sure what he understands.

TDog
01-30-2010, 05:06 PM
How hard would it be for guys like Beckham and Teahen to learn the Spanish equivalents of these basic words?

Tres, Dos, cortar, mio. Problem solved... Next!

That's three, two, cut and me (mine) for the language impaired...

Communication goes both ways. If a guy has the skills (and Ramirez does) then you learn to communicate with him. Make it a team building exercise.

I just hope Ozzie gives the expected starting IF lots of PT this spring so they can get used to working together in their new positions.

There was a story told in the Ken Burns baseball documentary about a Spanish-speaking outfielder on the '62 Mets who didn't understand being called off a fly in English. Collisions ensued. The centerfielder he collided with learned to say "I got it" in Spanish. The first time he tried it out, he was plowed into by an English-speaking outfielder.

I don't have anything to add to the debate. I was just reminded of that story.

asindc
01-30-2010, 05:16 PM
There was a story told in the Ken Burns baseball documentary about a Spanish-speaking outfielder on the '62 Mets who didn't understand being called off a fly in English. Collisions ensued. The centerfielder he collided with learned to say "I got it" in Spanish. The first time he tried it out, he was plowed into by an English-speaking outfielder.

I don't have anything to add to the debate. I was just reminded of that story.

I think that explains more about the '62 Mets than it does about this issue in general.

oeo
01-30-2010, 05:46 PM
I agree with this. For all we know, his English skills are perfect when it comes to baseball terms. I think it's unfair to judge that he would automatically become a better player if only he learned more English words when we don't know for sure what he understands.

I think it's a lot more likely that Alexei just didn't do these things in Cuba. They don't exactly play smart baseball, as evidenced by the numerous boneheaded plays they make in the WBC.

stevemcstud
01-30-2010, 06:40 PM
I definitely agree with moving to 2nd base over having him at SS.

I would have preferred that we signed Orlando Hudson, kept him at third, and packaged Fields and Getz with Linebrink in exchange for another reliever to free up some cap room.

Daver
01-30-2010, 07:09 PM
I definitely agree with moving to 2nd base over having him at SS.

I would have preferred that we signed Orlando Hudson, kept him at third, and packaged Fields and Getz with Linebrink in exchange for another reliever to free up some cap room.

Baseball has no salary cap.

Cuck the Fubs
01-30-2010, 07:28 PM
This is a no brainer yes.

Beckham will be a stud @ second....Alexei is a more dynamic SS than Beckham could or will ever be.

I think everyone is going to be pleasantly surprised by Teahan @ 3B.

RichFitztightly
01-31-2010, 03:45 PM
I was telling people from the get-go I thought Beckham would be a 2nd baseman. He reminds me of a more athletic Jeff Kent. I was actually pleasantly surprised at his development as a third baseman, and I wouldn't hesitate to keep him at that position.

veeter
01-31-2010, 10:46 PM
There's also something to be said for player comfort. If a player is comfortable defensively then all they need to do when they bat is hit. They won't be dwelling as often on the play they screwed up and have it affect their hitting too. So at times playing one position over another will lead to better offensive results. That's something else people are talking about with Teahen, that being locked in at 3B will lead to him being more comfortable and producing better at the plate.Yes, this is what I meant exactly.

stevemcstud
02-01-2010, 02:04 PM
Baseball has no salary cap.

Of course. I meant budget, same difference.

Save McCuddy's
02-02-2010, 01:05 AM
I really wish there was a source to see all the plays of a player over a few months or a whole season.

Alexei didn't butcher the position. You are looking at the 20 errors and not his overall play for the rest of the 220 putouts and 420 assists.

Of course you look at the errors. All everyday short stops are going to get better than 600 chances. Make the plays.

The fact is he's a top 5 SS in range, and the rest will come with maturity, more playing time and especially having Omar Vizquel to be his day-to-day mentor.He turns 29 this season (and by Cuban records). When can we say he's mature? I'd say his style is pretty well established. He has flashes of brilliance, great athletic ability and sporadic focus. He's not the first, but would be a rare exception to suddenly grow out of it.


You don't move a guy like that, especially one who holds his own with the bat, to another position just for stupid fantasy baseball comparisons and the uselessness (in the real MLB) of VORP.Where in my post did I suggest that Alexei be moved for fantasy baseball reasons or make any reference to VORP? I cite baseball IQ and want Beckham at the leadership position in the infield for his intangibles. I concede that physically Alexei profiles better at short in MLB.

There may be a good argument for Teahen at 2B and Beckham at 3B, but not for moving Alexei, especially based on defense.First of all, Teahen is not better defensively anywhere on the field than Beckham. Secondly, the only thing you would base a move of Alexei on would be defense. In this case, I think there is a very plausible argument that his defense warrants a move.