Gordon Beckham has been given a day off to clear his head.
The White Sox second baseman has been in a slump for nearly two months and manager Robin Ventura wants to give him a chance to slow down and catch his breath. Beckham, who last week said he probably played himself out of a chance to be traded by the White Sox, has a .156/.207/.283 slash line with three home runs and 22 RBIs in 199 plate appearances dating back to June 11.
Since that time Beckham has seen his average slip from .298 to .224.
“I don’t know if it’s concern, but you see sometimes he’s hit it hard and not really gotten anything out of it,” Ventura said. “I think a day will be good to recharge, work in the cage, do what you need to do. He’ll be back in there tomorrow.
Beckham’s strikeout rate is 17.2 percent this season, which is a tad over his career mark of 16.8, but still below the major league average of 19.1. His line drive rate is down from 26 percent in 2013 to 22 percent this season, but is still the second-highest mark of his career.
Ventura said early last month he thought Beckham might have been worried about the impending July 31 trade deadline and his future. With three middle infielders at Triple-A, there had been plenty of speculation that Beckham would be moved before the deadline or in the offseason. Ventura later said he thought his players handled the trade talks well after an early hiccup.
Now Ventura just wants Beckham to take the night off and get away from thinking too much about his rough run.
“I think everybody overthinks things a lot,” Ventura said. “Maybe him to an extent. I think when you go through periods like this, a lot of players, I think you do a lot of that. I think you’re trying to it figure out and you can’t help but try and think about it. Sometimes it’s just better to still play.”
Cooper out again
Pitching coach Don Cooper left Monday’s game early and is out Tuesday as he continues to deal with symptoms from vertigo, Ventura said. Cooper returned to the team on Friday after he missed the previous 11 games. Ventura isn’t sure if Cooper will accompany the White Sox on their road trip to Seattle and San Francisco.
“You always like him when he's here,” Ventura said. “He has a lot of information. He's seen these guys from spring training on so just the feeling of having him here and working with the guys, but if he's not feeling well, you get a different feel. You feel bad for him. You think he's starting to feel better and he's not. It's our loss that he's not here.”
— Alejandro De Aza is out Tuesday with a bruised left knee sustained after he fouled off a pitch in Monday’s game. De Aza is still in pain but neither he nor Ventura believes he’s headed for the disabled list. De Aza suggested he would return to the lineup on Wednesday.
— Outfielder Avisail Garcia returned to the lineup at Triple-A Charlotte on Tuesday and hit a solo home run in his first at-bat. Garcia left Sunday’s game early with a bruised triceps after a pitch hit him. Garcia entered Tuesday’s game with five hits in the first 10 at-bats of his rehab assignment.