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Who’s On Third? White Sox Edition.

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Friday May 10th, 2013

When Gordon Beckham broke a bone in his hand and required surgery, many White Sox fans weren't overly concerned. After all, Beckham's offensive struggles have been well documented throughout his young career. Simply move Jeff Keppinger to second base, and then.... Wait. Who's going to take Keppinger's place at third?

When Gordon Beckham broke a bone in his hand and required surgery, many White Sox fans weren’t overly concerned. After all, Beckham’s offensive struggles have been well documented throughout his young career. Simply move Jeff Keppinger to Second base, and then…. Wait. Who’s going to take Keppinger’s place at third?

By Brian Madsen (White Sox Correspondent): 

Who’s on Third Base for the White Sox you ask…Connor Gillaspie. Who? Connor Gillaspie. The same new guy that’s hitting .291, the highest current batting average for any White Sox player with more than 80 AB.

The same  that hit CLEAN-UP in the Sox lineup in Wednesday night’s inter-league game against the Mets. The man from Omaha, Nebraska has been a revelation, so far. He’s played solid defensively, and swung a pretty hot bat.

As I mentioned above, he hit cleanup for the Sox on Wednesday, and went 2 for 4, with 2 RBI.

Connor Gillaspie’s Diving Catch:

One thing is for sure. When Gordon Beckham does return from his injury, Robin Ventura will have to think twice about who plays where. Beckham will more than likely return to second base. But, if Gillaspie continues to produce a play a solid 3B, how can he be benched? Especially when Jeff Keppinger is hitting .191, and has been an error machine?

One thing is for sure. When Gordon Beckham does return from his injury, Robin Ventura will have to think twice about who plays where. Beckham will more than likely return to Second Base. But, if Gillaspie continues to produce and play a solid 3B, how can he be benched? Especially when Jeff Keppinger is hitting .191, and has been an error machine!

Most Sox fans never thought they’d see the day when Gillaspie would be hitting 4th in the lineup. The fact he was even hitting #4 doesn’t speak well of the White Sox offense either.

Not that the man is a power hitter, or a HR machine. He’s not that at all. But when the rest of the team has struggled offensively (with the exception of Alex Rios), Robin Ventura had no other choice.

Will he be in the 4th spot again when the Sox resume play on Friday? Not sure. But with the ever floundering Adam Dunn, and the aging Paul Konerko both struggling, who knows.

It’s still only May, which means it’s early. But, patience runs thin quickly on the South Side of Chicago, which means Jeff Keppinger could find himself as a utility player soon if his poor play continues.

When Gordon Beckham first hurt himself, many thought that 2012’s Starting 3B would be called back up to the Majors, Brent Morel. But, Morel has continued to struggle even at the Minor League level at Charlotte. So, the Sox went with Gillaspie. And, so far, the gamble has paid off.

The White Sox GM Kenny Williams acquired Gillaspie in a trade from the San Franciso Giants in February. Gillaspie started his major league career with the Giants in 2008.

He spent time in the minors until 2011, when he was recalled to replace Brandon Belt. Once again in 2012, he was called up when Pablo Sandoval went on the DL. Gillaspie later became expendable, and was dealt to the Sox in 2013.

The Sox were known to be looking for a left-handed bat off the bench during the off-season. They were even rumored to be after names like Ben Zobrist.

When a trade of significance never came to fruition, the Sox focused their attention on Gillaspie. Most Sox fans, much like myself, were not familiar with Gillaspie. He showed signs in Spring Training games of being able to stick with the team.

Sure enough, he made the MLB club, and traveled north with the team.

I'm not professing that Gillaspie is going to be an All-Star. He may not even be in the starting lineup by September.  But, in a season of disappointments for the White Sox, at least so far, Gillaspie has been one of the few bright spots. Not bad for a guy most Sox fans hadn't heard of when he was acquired. In fact, I bet none of you even noticed that I've spelled his name wrong throughout this entire article. His name is Conor, not Connor. And, at least for now, he's the White Sox starting third baseman.

I’m not professing that Gillaspie is going to be an All-Star. He may not even be in the starting lineup by September. But, in a season of disappointments for the White Sox, at least so far,he has been one of the few bright spots. Not bad for a guy most Sox fans hadn’t heard of when he was acquired. In fact, I bet none of you even noticed that I’ve spelled his name wrong throughout this entire article. His name is Conor, not Connor. And, at least for now, he’s the White Sox starting Third Baseman at Us Cellular Field in Chicago (AKA the South Siders territory).

*** The views and opinions expressed in this report are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of mlbreports.com and their partners***

A big thank-you goes out to our ‘White Sox Correspondent’ Brian Madsen for preparing today’s featured article. Brian was born and raised in Chicago Heights, IL, a south suburb of Chicago.  He attended Illinois St. University, majoring in education/teaching. Brian now lives in Joliet, IL with my wife Suzanne two daughters, Abby, 9, and Grace, 3.

He has worked at The Little Guys Home Technology for 12 years as a salesman/system designer/custom integrator. Brian is an avid White Sox, Bears, Blackhawks, and Bulls fan.   

a brian madsen

Please e-mail me  at: mlbreports@gmail.com with any questions and feedback. To subscribe to our website and have the Daily Reports sent directly to your inbox, click here and follow the link at the top of our homepage.

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Posted on May 10, 2013, in MLB Teams: Articles and Analysis, The Rest: Everything Baseball and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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