BULLfreak Posted June 5, 2008 Group: Member Topic Count: 0 Content Count: 7,890 Reputation: 10 Days Won: 0 Joined: 10/07/2004 Share Posted June 5, 2008 June 05, 2008Beckham is the 1.The Rays on Wednesday said they had narrowed the field to Beckham and Florida State catcher Buster Posey.Beckham, 18, is an athletic, five-tools type of player projected by many scouts to be a future star, possibly along the lines of current Rays CF B.J. Upton, or his brother Justin, a RF with the Diamondbacks.Here is what Rays scouting director R.J. Harrison said about Beckham at last week's media session:"A really good player at a premium position. Middle of the field player, very good athlete, an advanced bat, had a real good awareness on the field. He plays the game with a great deal of enthusiasm, and then when you spend time with him away from the field, he's the same guy. He's a fun guy to be around.''In an interview with the Times earlier this week, Beckham's father, Jimmy, said he his son, the youngest of three, was the total package as a player, offering comparisons that he hits with the power of Marlins star Hanley Ramirez, runs with the confidence of Mets star Jose Reyes and had the leadership abilities of Yankees star Derek Jeter. "He's special. He has real unique leadership skills,'' Jimmy Beckham said. "I brag about my sons all the time, but he's a great kid, a really great kid. He's got the ultimate personality. He's the life of the party.''Beckham started playing baseball as a young kid in Griffin, about 40 miles south of Atlanta, then gave up the sport when he was 11, only to be urged back in about three years later by his father and older brother Jeremy, who played at Georgia Southern and also could be drafted."There was a time where like most black kids he gravitated toward basketball and football, but my deal with him was that he could play other sports but he couldn't totally quit baseball,'' Jimmy Beckham said. "And then he got excited about it again.''The draft starts at 2 p.m. and Rays officials will discuss the decision shortly after that. One question is likely to be about rumors, reported by Baseball Prospectus and other web sites, that Posey was seeking a package of $12-million.Posted by Marc Topkin at 10:06:48 AM on June 5, 2008 http://blogs.tampabay.com/rays/ Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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