MILWAUKEE -- He isn’t about to reveal the meaning of the stirring motion but it's evident Gordon Beckham and the White Sox still know how to have fun.
Beckham wouldn’t confirm Monday that his celebration after Sunday’s game-winner was a playful jab at the expense of outfielder Adam Eaton, who recently said he’s the straw that stirs the White Sox lineup.
Eaton, as well as a multitude of players wearing t-shirts featuring the leadoff man’s quote, have corroborated just what everyone was doing on the field after Beckham’s two-out, RBI single off Aroldis Chapman lifted the White Sox to a 4-3 victory over the Cincinnati Reds on Sunday. As he rounded first base and teammates raced in his direction, Beckham clasped his hands together and made a circular motion as if he were churning butter.
“We’re just messing around and having some fun,” Beckham said. “I mean, it’s always fun to win games and it’s definitely fun to win like that. I haven’t had that feeling in like six years so that was a lot of fun for me. It was good, a good day.”
Eaton doesn’t seem to mind the playful swipe.
After all, he was the first one to greet Beckham -- whose RBI single gave the White Sox their fourth victory in six tries -- and mocked the motion as well. And Eaton already has exacted some revenge on Beckham (suggesting perhaps he created the highlighter-yellow T-shirts), posting throughout the clubhouse a grainy picture of the utility man from his youth.
“That’s the showing of a good team,” Eaton said. “I was fortunate to be on a couple of championship clubs in the minor leagues and that’s what you have in the clubhouse, just fun going and guys giving each other a hard time, T-shirts that make no sense, and pictures of guys when they were in their teens.
“It’s fun loving and like I said, a club that can laugh together usually will win.”
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White Sox manager Robin Ventura appreciates the gag. Formerly a prankster in his own right (ask him about that John Olerud/Rickey Henderson story sometime), Ventura wants his players to stay loose as they attempt to dig out of the hole they created for themselves on their previous road trip.
“Teams always come up something,” Ventura said. “I’m out of that business. I just stay away from it. I want them to have fun so that’s one way for them to have fun. It could get dirty, but it’s been fun for them. Let them have as much fun as they can while also realizing what’s going on in the game.”