In 2008, the Tampa Bay Rays selected shortstop Tim Beckham with the first overall pick in Major League Baseball’s Amateur Draft. And just like any other player selected in that coveted position, Beckham seemed to be on the fast track to the big leagues — or at least a fairly quick path — but nearly five years later he's still trying to prove himself at Triple-A Durham as questions surrounding his offense and defense linger.
One thing holds true though: His athleticism is off the charts. Odds are that's the one main attribute that drew attention to him in the first place, and as we saw on Friday night, the now 23-year-old still has it in abundance.
As you'll see in the video, Scranton-Wilkes Barre RailRiders catcher Jeff Farnham is the guy charged with the task of keeping Beckham off home plate as he raced around to score from second base on Cole Figueroa's clean basehit to center field. The throw coming in from Melky Mesa was a pretty strong one, too, though it didn't really allow Farnham to block the plate as solidly as he would have preferred. Still, he had plenty of time to swing around and apply the tag on the sliding Beckham.
I'll be honest, at first look it appears like Farnham got the tag on Beckham's arm. Unfortunately for him, the home plate umpire ruled that the tag was missed. At that point, it was pretty much over. After Beckham hopped to his feet, he made one juke move to the right and then worked his way around to get his hand on the plate just ahead of the tag.
Undoubtedly a spectacular way to score a run. Maybe a little controversial, as well, considering the possible missed call. But at least we know it didn't factor in the outcome as it was the final run scored in the Durham Bulls 8-4 victory.