|(2/26/15) Rays infielder Tim Beckham is in the mix to claim a middle-infield spot this spring after missing most of the 2014 season while rehabbing from knee surgery, MLB.com reports.
Beckham, selected first overall in the 2008 draft, tore his right ACL and underwent sugery on Dec. 17, 2013. He was able to make it back late last season and contribute to a playoff push by Triple-A Durham, hitting .258/.281/.290 in 62 at-bats.
"Coming back and playing last year, playing that month and a half, producing and helping the team out a lot," Beckham said. "And we went pretty far in the playoffs. So that brought a lot of confidence back my way. Just sliding, jumping, those are big hurdles. Just doing stuff you don't do every day off the baseball field. I wouldn't be sliding if I wasn't in a game. So that month and a half was big for me."
Beckham also said the past "not anything I think about," adding, "That's not anything I want to think about right now. I'm here, I'm healthy, and I'll take it one day at a time. Just to be able to be out there with the guys, laughing and taking ground balls, swinging, that's what the game's about, having fun. That's what we started out doing as kids. This is the game we love."
Prior to his ACL injury, Beckham hit .276/.342/.387 with four home runs, 51 RBI and 17 stolen bases in 460 at-bats with Durham in 2013. If he makes the team this spring, the infielder could see time at second base and shortstop.