Much to the chagrin of many Cubs fans, we’re finally seeing the true limits of Tony Campana’s abilities as a major league player.
Since a blistering start to the season when Campana finished the month of April hitting .370 with a perfect 7-for-7 in stolen bases, his average has plummeted 93-points during the last 30-games with 11 steals and three caught stealing.
It’s unlikely Dale Sveum succumbed to the overwhelming calls from the Wrigley faithful for Campana to be an everyday player (there are hardly better options), but you can’t argue with Tony’s playing time–he’s made 39 appearances and started in nearly half the games this season (27).
As I’ve continued to say, Campana is simply over-matched as a hitter at the major league level, and his alarming 31 strikeouts is but one indication.
I’ve never questioned Campana’s effort or ability to spark the club offensively, and there’s no arguing he’s super-talented on the base paths.
But there’s only so much you can expect from a guy flailing wildly at the plate to slap the ball for base hits. Reaching base for Campana appears more a matter of luck and defensive miscues than actual skill.
In fact, during this road trip Campana is 5-for-25, but two of those hits involved a blown call by a first base umpire and a pitcher failing to cover first base on a dribbler off Campana’s bat.
Not Tony’s problem, of course, but lucky nonetheless.
Luck never lasts, which keeps Campana an ideal threat to come off the bench as he did a week ago against San Diego, stealing two bases and forcing Andrew Cashner to avert more attention to the base runner than he normally would.
Yet on a team destined for 100-losses, Campana remains an everyday player, even if his skills and numbers suggest otherwise.