Baltimore Orioles: Happy birthday to Tim Beckham
The Baltimore Orioles lead-off hitter got an early birthday present from manager Buck Showalter.
On the eve of his 28th birthday, Tim Beckham learned he would have an everyday position with the 2018 Baltimore Orioles.
With Manny Machado moving shortstop, Beckham will now be the Orioles everyday third baseman. Prior to this announcement, his actual spot was uncertain.
Ready for a new position
According to a video interview of Beckham on The Baltimore Sun, he is perfectly fine with his new position. Beckham said:
"“For me, it’s definitely, it’s more comfort level when you’re in the lineup every day. I just want to be in the lineup every day and have an opportunity to help the team win.”"
He also discussed going to Sarasota to work out at the spring training facility as early as February 11. There, he will work with coaches to hone his skills at third base. Fortunately, Beckham is an athletic player, so the adjustment should be quick. The biggest adjustment will most likely be the throw to first, but stopping the ball shouldn’t be much of a change for him.
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A little history
Beckham joined the Orioles at the 2017 trade deadline in July. Prior to the trade with Baltimore, Beckham spent his entire career with the Tampa Bay Rays. He was the first draft pick in 2008 when the Rays took him straight out of high school. His Major League debut was in 2013. But he spent all of 2014 in the minors. His first full season without a trip back to the minors was 2017.
Bringing it to Baltimore
When Beckham arrived in Baltimore, something clicked. In four seasons with the Rays, his slash was .247/.299/.421, but in his half season in Baltimore he hit .306/.348/.523. In August, he was unstoppable. His batting slash was .394/.417/.646. He had 50 hits in 127 at-bats and 29 games. It was absolutely amazing to watch him play in August. His performance did not go unnoticed as the MLB awarded him with the Player of the Week honors for the week of August 6, 2017.
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Hopefully, that Tim Beckham will return when the season starts back up on March 29. Beckham will enter his first year of arbitration at the end of the 2018 season. He enters free agency in 2021, so he could be an Oriole for several years to come. Happy birthday, Tim Beckham! Hopefully, year 28 will be your best yet!