Gordon Beckham: Why He Will Eventually Succeed

Steven KersteinContributor IMay 28, 2012

CHICAGO, IL - MAY 20: Gordon Beckham #15 of Chicago White Sox runs the bases after hitting a solo home run in the top of the fourth inning against the Chicago Cubs during an interleague game at Wrigley Field on May 20, 2012 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Mike McGinnis/Getty Images)
Mike McGinnis/Getty Images

Optimism is contagious.  When a team like the Chicago White Sox is winning, it's hard for the feeling not to tingle.

Breaking a lengthy streak of pessimistic columns, this column will hopefully leave sweeter remnants than my usual rants.

A piece that discusses why Gordon Beckham, second baseman of the Chicago White Sox, will ultimately thrive in the big leagues.

For Beckham, his journey from draft day in 2008 to May 2012 has seen its highs and lows.  While the highs have popped up on occasion, the lows certainly seem to be more prevalent.

Like I said, I'm going to sincerely attempt to be optimistic.  Beckham's rocket line drives and stellar defense still make me want to believe that he's the guy who will replace Konerko one day as the face of the organization.

For as well as Konerko is hitting, the amount of respect that people have for Paulie is truly underrated.  His sincere, professional manner in which he goes about his craft cannot be duplicated.

And that's why Paul Konerko is so special.  The baseball world likes to see guys like Konerko succeed.  Many people believe that Gordon Beckham has that same potential.  A world of potential that goes way beyond baseball ability.  I'm talking about the ability to pose as an example for an entire organization.

For Sox fans like myself, we desperately want to see Beckham succeed.  Otherwise, this organization seems incapable of developing talented position players.

Gordon Beckham was supposed to be a sure thing—an end to the nonsense going on in the minor league system.

After a captivating rookie campaign in 2009, the 25-year-old has stumbled. (I say stumble and not something as strong as falling flat on his face.)

While his bat comes and goes at the worst times, his defense has really kept people from completely bashing him.  If his stellar defense lengthens the leash the team sticks with him, then so be it.

At the age of 25, most baseball players haven't necessarily reached their make or break points.

Just look at the guys that Baltimore Orioles are putting out there, more specifically Adam Jones and Matt Wieters.

Both guys both came in with a ton of hype and took a little bit more time to elevate their play.  Wieters, now 26, has transformed into an above-average major league catcher.  Jones, also 26, blossomed into one of the young superstars in this league seemingly overnight.

Moral of the story: There's still time for Beckham to make this transition.

With Beckham, his success is contingent on his attitude and a stable state of mind.  He's the type of player who rallies around fan support.  He just needs the confidence.  When a team is winning, it's easy to be a bit more patient.

It's time for Beckham to join the hit parade, and Sunday was a great start.  His four-hit attack definitely instilled a bit more hope that Beckham will be what me and my fellow Sox fans so badly want him to be.

After Saturday's ballgame, Beckham was interviewed on The Score (White Sox radio for all you other baseball fans).  While listening, a couple of his responses resonated with me.

His admiration for Konerko was definitely commendable.  For Beckham, Paulie represents everything Gordon wants to achieve throughout his career.  I guess you can do worse for role models.

More importantly, I was impressed with Beckham's attitude.  He has seemingly formed a plan and is sticking to it.  Regardless of the end result, he's keeping his head up.

For Beckham and the White Sox, winning baseball games fosters this "head-up" attitude.  At this juncture in time, that's all you can ask for.