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Gordon Beckham impresses in first series against Yankees

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derek-jeter-gordon-beckham.JPGIn just over a calendar year, White Sox third baseman Gordon Beckham has gone from playing against Kennesaw State to playing on the same diamond with the most storied franchise in the history of sports. But as far as first impressions go, Beckham has to be happy with the one he made on the New York Yankees.

In his first series against the Bronx Bombers, Beckham played an integral role in each of his team's three wins. For the series, he went 7-for-19, had 7 RBI and scored three times. Five of his seven hits were doubles. It was more than enough to turn some a few heads in the opposing dugout.  

"I got a chance to talk to him quite a bit, " Yankees captain Derek Jeter said, "because he was on second base all the time."

So what did Jeter have to say to the former Georgia Bulldog?
"[Jeter] was really nice to me," Beckham said. "He just told me, 'Keep playing well and we'll see you in a little bit.' He couldn't have been nicer. It was real good to talk to him and realize how good of a guy he actually is in person. You hear about him all the time, but you don't really know until you meet somebody."

Jeter was not only impressed with Beckham's hitting ability, but also had good things to say about his work in the field.

"He's got a great approach at the plate," Jeter said. "He's a guy that hits the ball all over the field. He can pull it, he can hit it the other way. He hits off-speed, he hits fastballs. He hasn't been playing third base long from what I understand and he's doing a great job. So he has a real bright future."

If Beckham was at all intimidated playing against Jeter and Alex Rodriguez -- guys he grew up watching and, at times, emulating -- he didn't show it.

"You know, it's a great honor to play against them," Beckham said. "They're excellent players and people. It's very cool to play against them, but in the end it's still just another game."

To say that Beckham is in the midst of a hot streak is an understatement. in his last 20 games, he's hitting .411 with 11 doubles and 17 RBI.

He now finds himself among the names in the running for American League Rookie of the Year -- a fact he said he hadn't really considered yet this season.

"If it happens, it happens," Beckham said. "My goal is to help this team get in the playoffs. If we get in the playoffs, Rookie of the Year isn't that important. It's an afterthought. It would be a great success if it happened, but I'm not worried about it."

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This page contains a single entry by Kevin Allen published on August 2, 2009 5:22 PM.

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