Athens, GA - Former University of Georgia All-America shortstop Gordon Beckham, recipient of two American League Rookie of the Year awards, will be honored Saturday during the Georgia-Auburn football game.
Beckham, now starring for the Chicago White Sox, is two-for-two in awards since the season ended. Last month, The Sporting News selected Beckham as the 2009 American League Rookie of the Year after voting done by a panel of 338 Major League players.
Recently, Beckham added a second honor when he was tabbed the 2009 Outstanding Rookie in the American League by the Major League Baseball Players Association. This latest Players Choice Award is a result of balloting among all Major League players conducted in September under the supervision of accounting firm KPMG. On Monday, the Baseball Writers Association of America will announce their selections for American and National League Rookie of the Year.
A 6-0, 190-pound native of Atlanta, Beckham batted .270 with 28 doubles, 14 home runs and 63 RBI after being promoted to the White Sox on June 4. He played in 103 games for Chicago while adjusting to third base despite playing shortstop for his entire baseball career. In 2008, he was the White Sox’s first round draft pick (No. 8 overall) after a stellar three-year collegiate career including leading the Bulldogs to the College World Series Finals. He finished his Bulldog career with a .333 batting average, a school record 53 home runs, 182 RBI and started all 197 games at shortstop.
In 2009, Beckham led the American League rookies in doubles, RBI and extra base hits and finished second in home runs and on-base percentage.
Along with his baseball skills, Beckham is quite adept on the tennis court. He will make a special appearance at the Rock-n-Racquets tennis exhibition next month in Athens. The event features the world’s top-ranked female player in Serena Williams along with former University of Georgia four-time All-American John Isner, U.S. Open star and Marietta native Melanie Oudin and the 2009 Olympus U.S. Open Series champion Sam Querrey. The event will be held at Stegeman Coliseum Saturday, Dec. 12 at 4:00 p.m.