Friday, March 13, 2009

RaysProspects Predictions: Tim Beckham

What kind of season do you see Tim Beckham having in 2009?

Cork Gaines: Magic 8-Ball says...Something better than he did last year and something less than what we want. He is young and showed last year that there is going to be an adjustment period. He will probably be fine, but he is definitely a work in progress.

Tommy Rancel: I don't think that stats really matter with Beckham yet. Although it would be nice for him to start out hitting well, I think it's more important for him to refine his approach at the plate and become more selective. With a player of his age and experience, you almost have to turn a blind eye to the stats and trust the scouts at this point.

R.J. Anderson: A progressive one, if not overly impressive statistically.

RaysParty: Thankfully Beckham is not Matt Bush and will be able to get to Majors as a shortstop. Last year Beckham was not to bad but it was an adjustment to playing every day as opposed to high school. I think the Rays will have coaches in the minors help him work on certain points of his game, but he can have a great season and maybe hit a line like .280/.350/.460. We should see him attempt more bases this season and start to hit for more extra bases including over 6-7 triples. If I have to give a projection of some key stats it will look like this:
.280/.350/.460, 6 triples, 25 stolen bases, 10 home runs. This assumes he plays most of the year mainly in Bowling Green and not short season Hudson Valley.

Tyler Hissey: Beckham is still very raw, of course, and will have his fair share of struggles at full-season ball. Barry Larkin comparisons are not tossed around lightly, though, and with legit five-tool talent, I would not be surprised to see him make a huge step forward at Bowling Green, hitting somewhere in the vicinity of .270/.340/.420. His presence on the roster will provide one of the best tourist attractions in a town that gets pretty boring after Hilltopper basketball season, as anyone who has been to the college town would agree. And he seems to be making quite the impression at big league camp already. I am anxious to see what the summer has in store for him.

Brickhaus: He'll have a learning season. I think he'll be slightly above-average for league (which, on the face of his stats, will look pretty mediocre), but will be spending most of the year focusing on putting his lower body in his swing and improving his play around the bag. He's a tools guy, but he's pretty raw for a #1 overall pick, so I don't expect him to perform great right out of the box. However, people will see that the tools are still there, and that he's turning the tools into skills, and his performance should improve over the course of the season, so he'll continue to be ranked highly by the publications (sort of like Mike Moustakas this year).

Doug Milhoan: I think he will get off to a good/great start in his first year of full-season ball at Bowling Green. But I see him fading as the summer wears on. Shortstop is a physically demanding position and he's never played nearly that many games. Hopefully, no injuries. Long term, he will stick at SS, the power will develop, and I think so will the patience at the plate. A solid defensive shortstop with decent OBP and some pop at his age (19 in '09) is still a top prospect regardless of any setbacks towards the end of the year..

Kevin Gengler: I think it's going to take him some time to adjust to the advanced pitching, but by the end of the year he'll have a league-average line, which is impressive for a 19-year old shortstop in full-season ball. He'll flash the tools that made him the #1 pick but I'm not sure anything about him is really outstanding. He has quick wrists but probably needs to re-build his swing, or at least adjust it, and that's going to be tough to handle along with everything else. I think that when everyone rolls out their 2010 Rays prospect lists, Beckham will be in the 3-5 range.


  1. Remember when you're talking about Beckham that he was NOT the best talent in the draft. But "T-Beck" wasn't a Boras advisee, and he wasn't asking for way too much money.

    Pedro Alvarez was the consensus No. 1 pick, but the Rays deal with mega-agent Scott Boras as little as possible. And Buster Posey was asking WAY too much money.

    I think the Rays got the better end of the deal, drafting No. 1 overall a guy who was a legit first-rounder, though certainly slightly overdrafted as the top pick. Then they picked up the best high school arm in the draft with Lobstein and went to work getting terrific college players like Jefferies and Sheridan and Corder and Gorgen and Scelfo. All have the tools it takes to play at the MLB level.

    When you're talking about expectations for Beckham, then, don't start looking for No. 1-overall pick numbers. Look for him to struggle as Josh Hamilton did in 1999 and 2000 (though let's hope Tim has fewer bumps in his road to the bigs).

    Look for him to struggle. I think league average would be a breakout year for Tim, who probably won't play every day. Remember there are more infield prospects (Jason Tweedy, anybody? Have we forgotten him?) moving along in the system this season who may well share time with Tim.

    A .280/.350/.460 line is pretty lofty ... there's no way he'll do more than a plus-50 on his OBP. He's simply not patient enough and has yet to garner the respect of players he's competing against.

    Look for something closer to .250/.300/.380.

  2. Don't want to jinx him, but he's batting .298 in May...

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  4. Let's not delve into insults like that...