Top Sox split on Beckham
CHICAGO – The relationship between Ken Williams and Ozzie Guillen has had its rough spots, but it usually has remained functional.
But now the White Sox’s general manager and manager might no longer be talking – at least that’s reflective in their evaluation of the team’s underperforming talent.
Second baseman Gordon Beckham took a .199 batting average into Wednesday’s game against the Detroit Tigers and leads the Sox with 38 strikeouts.
But Williams and Guillen appear to have opposing opinions on how the team’s most coveted young player should remedy his problems at the plate.
“When you struggle, you just try to put the ball in play, get base hits, not hit home runs, don’t try and hit the ball in the gap, just have a good swing,” Guillen said. “Then you don’t get the extra base because of that situation. But when you strikeout and struggle the way he does, obviously, it’s something we think about and we talk about it.”
Williams doesn’t want Beckham to concern himself with the strikeout total.
“[He should] go back to his setup of last year,” Williams said. “Free his hands up, take his hacks and not worry about contact as much as just putting a good swing and driving the ball, and he’s looked a lot better more recently.”
Change coming: Williams no longer is on his own time line regarding the Sox.
Now it is up to other ballclubs as Williams looks to make changes to the team’s roster. The market demand for his players remains to be seen.
“Some changes need to take place,” Williams said. “I don’t know what and I don’t when, but some changes need to take place. Things aren’t happening the way that we envisioned, and when they don’t happen the way you envision you’ve got to make an adjustment.”
Williams shouldn’t have trouble doing so. He said numerous teams were interested in Sox players and it was likely that those with veto power wouldn’t block any trade to a contender.
And Wednesday, Williams was a realist.
“It is what it is,” Williams said. “I have to listen. “It’s not that I want to, but I’m not blind.”