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updated: 6/25/2013 11:48 PM

White Sox' Beckham owns up to 'stupid' play

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  • White Sox starting pitcher Chris Sale lost a chance to pick up a victory Tuesday night because of some shaky infield defense in the ninth inning.

      White Sox starting pitcher Chris Sale lost a chance to pick up a victory Tuesday night because of some shaky infield defense in the ninth inning.
    Associated Press

 
 

For the better part of three months, we've been poking and prodding the White Sox for their general inability to hit the ball, catch the ball and run the bases.

The Sox put themselves on the tee again Tuesday night, but let's take a different spin and praise instead of pulverize.

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Specifically, let's give it up to Gordon Beckham, who is responsible for the latest defensive gaffe.

With the White Sox holding a 4-3 lead over the Mets in the ninth inning Tuesday night at U.S. Cellular Field, closer Addison Reed was one out away from nailing down his 22nd save.

David Wright was on second base with two down, and pinch hitter Daniel Murphy hit a high popup to the left of the mound.

As Sox third baseman Conor Gillaspie calmly waited underneath the baseball for the final out, Beckham came barreling in from second base.

"You're at a loss to describe it," White Sox manager Robin Ventura said.

Beckham stumbled over the mound, almost collided with Reed and dropped the ball for an error, allowing Wright to come home with the tying run.

Afterward, Beckham took full responsibility, and then some.

"Well, I ran in there and screwed up," he said. "That's what happened. Stupid play for me. My heart was in the right spot, but my mind obviously wasn't. It was loud. I screwed up.

"I'm glad we won. I didn't cost us the game, but it's a stupid play and I'm an idiot."

The Sox did win 5-4 when Alexei Ramirez -- Sunday's defensive goat -- singled home Jeff Keppinger with two outs in the bottom of the ninth.

Nothing has come easy for the White Sox all season, so why should Tuesday's interleague game against New York be any different?

Getting back to Beckham, at least he deserves come credit for coming clean. And he scored some extra points for gallows humor.

"I'm going to be here tomorrow, hopefully, so come back and play again," Beckham said. "My heart was in a good spot right there. I was trying to make a play, but it's unacceptable. You do that, you blow the save for Reed and don't get (Chris) Sale a win.

"It's just a stupid play by me and fortunately it didn't cost us, but unfortunately for those guys I didn't do much to help them."

Sale did deserve the win after pitching 8 innings and allowing 3 runs on 4 hits while striking out 13. Alas, it was yet another tough-luck outing for the Sox' ace left-hander.

"I don't think I've ever been disappointed after a win," Sale said. "Stuff happens. It's definitely not the first time that's happened and it's probably not the last either. Anytime you walk away with a win, there's no reason to hang your head.

"My record is irrelevant. We got a win today, and that's all that really matters, to be honest with you."

While shaken by another defensive blunder, Ventura also tried to stay positive.

"It's just one of those that baseball finds a way to put a weird play in there, or something like that," Ventura said. "And you have to learn from it. That's the one thing. We'd better be learning from it."

sgregor@dailyherald.com

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