“Getting Pierre is huge, and not because I’m kind of tied into the trade,” said Beckham from his home in Georgia. “I just think it’s a great trade. One thing I heard about Pierre is how great a guy he is. I’ve heard it from every person I talked to, and chemistry really does go a long way for a team’s success. I’m excited he gets to play every day, and I’m excited for him to be our leadoff guy. He sets the table, and it’s up to us to drive him in.”
… “I heard a long time ago, and I’m not sure who said it, I guess it might have been David Ortiz,” Beckham said. “Someone asked him why he was so good in the clutch at the end of the game, and he said that he treated those at-bats the same as his first at-bat in a game. I’m trying to do the same thing. Just don’t overthink it. If we have runners on second and third, I really want the RBIs for our team — that’s all. It’s about results in baseball. As long as you don’t put too much pressure on yourself, you will be OK. Get a good pitch to hit, take a good whack at it, and if it goes at someone, what can you do? Sometimes that’s going to happen.”
… “They probably didn’t want me to run or bunt a bunch,” said Beckham of the difference in leading off, a responsibility he never discussed with the White Sox during the offseason. “I don’t think they wanted me to be a guy I’m not. Even though I think they were OK with me leading off, I thought for sure they were going to get somebody. I was willing to do it if it was the last option we had, but I just didn’t fit really well there. Now, it doesn’t matter where I hit. If they want me to drive in more runs, they probably will hit me lower in the order. If they want me to get on base more, they probably will hit me second.”
… “Yeah, I’m excited because I think we have a chance to be really good,” Beckham said. “I was watching the playoffs this year, and it was frustrating. I was thinking, ‘That could be us, making diving plays and hitting the ball over the fence in big-time situations.’ We have the team to get us there. If we can score, we’ll be OK.”
December 21, 2009
It’s that time of year again. I’ve finally gotten around to running the 2009 Catcher Block Percentage rankings. As annual traditions go, it isn’t up there with Thanksgiving, Christmas, or the Running of the Bulls, but hopefully you still enjoy it.
For those who aren’t familiar with the stat, I look at how well a catcher stops runners from moving up on balls in the dirt. Each wild pitch or passed ball saved is worth .27 runs (based on run expectancy and the timing of the events). Full methodology is described here. …