The Mets busy day continues, signing journeyman infielder Gordon Beckham to their 60-man player pool with an invitation to spring training 2.0. Following the re-signings of outfielder Ryan Cordell and right-handed pitcher Erasmo Ramirez, as well as the similar deal with right-handed reliever Hunter Strickland, New York has bolstered their veteran infield depth as well.
Beckham spent 2019 with the moribund Detroit Tigers, with a .215/.271/.372 line in 240 plate appearances and 83 games. He’s best known for his seven-year stint with the Chicago White Sox, who took him 8th overall in the 2008 amateur draft. Beckham’s best season was his rookie year, as he rocketed through the minors to post a .270/.347/.460 line in 430 PAs over 103 games in 2009. Beckham never matched those heights again offensively, but has stuck in the league for parts of seasons with the Angels, Braves, Giants, Mariners, and the aforementioned Tigers. Beckham’s ideal defensive home is second base, though he’s recorded over 1,500 innings at third as well, and can spell at shortstop in a pinch. He has an accurate, average arm, but below-average range and limited offensive impact hold down the 33 year old’s profile.
Beckham has been open-minded about working on his swing to try and return to his initial success, and has a reputation as a hard-nosed veteran leader. Still, coming off his worst season as a pro, Beckham is a ways down the list for the Mets infield depth. Health risks of all sorts are prominent in this shortened, quickly restarted season, but Beckham will likely be looking up at Luis Guillorme, Jed Lowrie, and Eduardo Núñez for a big league role, and competing with Max Moroff and even Andrés Giménez for reps.