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Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Wynn Beck caught, had left-handed bat, saw five pro seasons

Wynn Beck 1990 Madison Muskies cardThe Oakland Athletics thought they had something in catcher Wynn Beck. That's because he had something that few other catchers had: A left-handed bat, Athletics scout Pat Sullivan told Beck's hometown Wilmington Star-News.

"Left-handed hitting catchers are pretty rare," Sullivan told The Star-News of the catcher who threw right-handed, but batted left. "He has good bat speed and power. We think he will be a real plus for us."

Wynn was taken by the Athletics in the second round of the 1988 draft out of South Brunswick High School in North Carolina.

Wynn, though, could only take that bat to five sometimes shortened seasons as a pro. He briefly made AA, but he never made it higher.

Wynn started his career in the rookie Arizona League. He got into 36 games and hit .221. He explained to The Star-News in July his thinking behind turning pro.

"I figure that by signing now, I'd have three years to get better and have the Athletics teach me their way," Wynn told The Star-News.

But Wynn could do little with that early start in 1989 after a shoulder injury. He got into just nine Arizona League games.

Wynn got his most consistent time in 1990, at single-A Madison. He got into 102 games, but just 21 as catcher. He hit .264, with eight home runs.

Going into 1991, though, Beck was injured again. This time it was his back. By June 1 the former second-round pick was released.

Wynn soon caught on with the Brewers, playing 33 games at single-A Beloit. He returned for 1992, but he got into just 19 games between Beloit and AA El Paso. It was his final season as a pro.
Originally published March 27, 2015

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