And I'll be damned if I allow myself to be left out.
With numbers like a .224 BA, 4 HR, 24 RBI, and an OPS of .602, it would still seem like the only way Gordon Beckham would be an 'impact player' is as a cautionary tale to any GM pondering bringing up a a treasured prospect at an accelerated rate just because attendance is lagging, the team needs a spark, and everyone seems to agree that Chris Getz isn't very good.
It's been such a long, long slide for Gordon, filled with countless hideous-looking strikeouts, the time he threw his gum at the wall and it bounced off and hit him in the face, and the general process of letting the team down when they were basing the top of the order around him. But through it all, Gordon has never gotten frustrated, he---wait...this isn't a Phil Rogers article-- Gordon has gotten extremely frustrated. His frustration has spilled over into everything, he's chased bad pitches, starting golfing to get more power, and has pretty much made things worse at every turn.
So I feel a bit justified in jumping all over a the slight glimmer of hope that the last two weeks or so have been, because it's the first legitimate good sign all year. Alllllll year.
First of all, Gordon has a 4-game hitting streak! 4! No? Not excited? Fine.
Perhaps the most exciting stat split for Gordon Beckham is since he fielded the bench on June 24th. Since then he's played 14 games, gone 15-45 (.333), he's only taken two walks (still very bad), has hit 4 doubles, a triple, and 3 homers (8 extra-base hits!) for a .667 slugging percentage.
But that's not what I'm excited about.
The reason to think things might be slightly better for Beckham: No multi-strikeout games in this span. Not one! And only 5 Ks total, which would give him a K-rate of 11%, as opposed to the 19% he's racked up for the season. How many multi-strikeout games did Beckham have going in? A robustly crummy 13. Not even particularly scattered either, Beckham has had two instances of back-to-back multi-strikeout games. Whereas a single multi-strikeout game could have been explained away as Gordon having a poor matchup versus the starter, the back-to-back games showed that Beckham vs. moving ball was a bad matchup for him. The reduction in whiffing for the not-typically free-swinging Beckham suggests a return to his traditional approach at the plate, and that he's no longer taking hitting classes taught by Andruw Jones.
Things like Beckham's abysmal batting average for balls in play, and mesmerizing power outage, were bound to come around, but now that he's no longer completely overmatched against major league pitching, maybe he can get back on the road to success. Why next season, Gordon could rebound to hit .285 with 30 doubles, and everyone could go back to slightly overrating him again.
Of course what really needs to happen is for Gordon to take back the No. 2 slot. The team has been without any thunder at the top of the order for so long that most White Sox fans probably forget what it's like.