Unsurprisingly, the Sox called up Gordon Beckham yesterday, sending Wilson Betemit far far away. This is not really a surprise as Betemit has a 50% fielding percentage. The guy commits more errors than Brian Anderson causes game-winners. That said, GB (as he shall now be known) has a few more hurdles to cross:
Experience: As much hype as there is around Beckham, I think he really DOES need a full season in the minors. There's no substitute for hard-nosed work ethic in the dregs, learning all those little fundamentals that are oh so valuable in MLB.
Josh Fields: As inconsistent as he is, Fields is still the 3B. I expect that Fields will finally make his move over to 1B with Beckham's arrival, but at least on paper, Fields is still the owner of third base. If Beckham doesn't transition well, Fields may be there just by default (Lillibridge? HA!)
He's Not Cuban: You laugh, but there are two kinds of infielders in Ozzie-land: Cuban, and Other. Cuban infielders are forgiven for almost ANYthing in their mechanics. Juan Uribe and Alexei Ramirez both have unorthodox methods of playing the infield, but Ozzie loves it calling them elastic and rugged at their position.
On the flip side, Getz and Nix have done a great job at 2B, and Ozzie is calling for additional improvement. Hell, he even brought up Tadahito Iguchi's mechanics in the same season that he made that ridiculous "diving-over-the-mound" play. Same thing goes for Fields (although he does suck), and Wilson Betemit (also suck). If Beckham wants to succeed, he's going to have to take Ozzie's inevitable criticism in stride and continue to make the big plays.