The Seattle Mariners have agreed to a minor league contract with free-agent infielder Gordon Beckham, reports Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports. Beckham, who was released by the San Francisco Giants just last week, has struggled as of late.
Beckham finished the 2016 season with the Giants after coming over in a trade from Atlanta just before the end of the season. Last season, Beckham hit a disappointing .217/.300/.354 with five home runs and 30 runs batted in across 273 plate appearances with the Braves. Beckham was acquired in late September by the Giants, while they were anticipating a deep playoff run. Unfortunately, Beckham wasn’t to useful as he went 0-for-5 in just six plate appearances.
Beckham, 30, who has not been the same player he was in his “heyday” as a young middle infielder with the Chicago White Sox, has struggled considerably at the plate over his past three big league seasons. Beckham is hitting a collective .218/.278/.344 in 999 plate appearances between the White Sox, Braves and Giants.
Signing a minor league contract with the Giants in the offseason wasn’t promising, but it was an opportunity to get back to where he was in the big leagues. Unfortunately, Beckham struggled as he hit a devastating .194 in spring training and lost his job to utility man Aaron Hill.
Beckham will be sent to Triple-A Tacoma, where he can get some serious reps as the Mariners already have a pretty stacked infield with second baseman Robinson Cano, third baseman Kyle Seager and shortstop Jean Segura. On the bright side of things, Beckham’s advantage will be how versatile of a fielder he is, where he can play just about any position in the infield that doesn’t require to be on the mound or behind the dish.
Overall, Beckham’s number one issue is his problems at the plate and it will not be easy to get over that hump. Especially when he’s been hitting so poorly, but if somehow he can get back to the way he was you best believe you will see Beckham back in the big leagues sometime soon.