Tony Campana

Tony Campana

White Sox release Tony Campana after torn ACL


Tony Campana, who suffered a torn ACL while working out on his own in early February, has been released by the White Sox.

Campana signed a minor-league deal with the White Sox in November and was set to compete for a bench spot as a speedy, defense-first outfielder, but the 29-year-old journeyman is expected to miss the entire season.

This could be the end of the line for Campana, or at least the end of his legitimate chances to stick in the majors, because so much of his value came from speed and defense given his lowly .583 career OPS.

White Sox speedster Tony Campana suffers torn ACL

Tony Campana

Veteran outfielder Tony Campana, who would have competed for a spot on the White Sox’s bench in spring training, will likely miss the entire season after suffering a torn ACL while working out.

It’s a particularly tough injury for Campana because almost all of his value comes from speed and defense.

He’s a career .249 hitter with one homer and a .583 OPS in 257 games as a big leaguer, but Campana has swiped 66 bases while being caught just nine times and rates well defensively in center field.

White Sox sign Tony Campana to a minor league deal

Tony Campana

Outfielder Tony Campana announced on Twitter that he signed with the White Sox. Chris Cotillo of MLB Daily Dish confirms that it’s a minor league deal.

Campana, 28, doesn’t bring a whole lot with the bat — he has a career .584 OPS — but he can play all three outfield positions and he brings a ton of speed with him. In parts of four seasons in the major leagues in which he’s stepped to the plate 477 times, Campana has stolen 66 bases in 75 attempts (88%).

Angels’ flawed postseason roster costs them in Game 2 loss

Division Series - Kansas City Royals v Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim - Game One

The Angels made the choice to carry 12 pitchers on the ALDS roster against the Royals, which might not look remarkable at first glance. After all, most teams carry 12 pitchers all season long these days.

Mike Scioscia’s Angels, though, are carrying 12 pitchers against the Royals even though the plan calls for them to use just three starters in the five games. Ace Jered Weaver is slated to go on short rest in Game 4, and with the two off days, Game 2 starter Matt Shoemaker can go on normal rest in Game 5.

That leaves the Halos with an utterly unnecessary nine-man bullpen for five games in seven days. Even having played a pair of 11-inning games against the Royals, they’ve used only six of their relievers and they wouldn’t have chosen to dig that deep except for the fact that they gave themselves so many options to start with.

Those extra pitchers came at the expense of useful role players. Most notably absent is speedy outfielder Tony Campana, a great September and October kind of bit player with his ability to pinch-run and play excellent outfield defense.

Without Campana available, the Angels’ top pinch-running option in Friday’s Game 2 loss to the Royals was Collin Cowgill, an above average runner but by no means a burner. He stole four bases in 260 at-bats for the Angels this year. He’s 12-for-18 stealing bases in 253 career major league games. Campana is 66-for-75 stealing bases in 257 games.

Cowgill ran for C.J. Cron after a leadoff double in the eighth inning of a 1-1 game tonight. He then tried for third on Chris Iannetta’s flyout to center, only to be gunned down on a great throw from Jarrod Dyson. It was a worthy attempt by Cowgill, but there’s little doubt that Campana, in his place, would have made it to third. The next batter, Kole Calhoun, hit a grounder to second that most likely would have scored Campana, though, of course, things might have gone differently had Wade Davis been pitching with a man on base.

Having Cowgill pinch-run also denied the Angels of their best pinch-hitting option for Josh Hamilton, had they elected to go that route. As bad as Hamilton had looked, I imagine Scioscia would have pulled the trigger and had Cowgill bat in his place against left-hander Brandon Finnegan with a man on and one out in the bottom of the 10th. Hamilton went on to hit into a double play, leaving him 0-for-9 in the series. The Angels went on to surrender three runs in the 11th and lose 4-1.

Instead of giving themselves more offensive options, the Angels prepared for the worst-case scenario with their pitching staff, even though they were facing a rather low scoring offense. The truth is that if the Angels were really in a position in which they needed nine relievers to get through the series against the Royals, they were doomed anyway.

Mike Trout leaves game with stomach illness

mike trout getty

From Jeff Fletcher of the Orange County Register comes word that Angels outfielder Mike Trout had to make an early exit from Wednesday afternoon’s game against the A’s because of a stomach bug.

Trout was 1-for-2 with a stolen base and a run scored before the Angels had Grant Green pinch-hit for him in the top of the fifth inning. In the bottom of that frame, Tony Campana took over in center field.

The Angels have a scheduled team off day on Thursday, which should give Trout ample rest leading into the final weekend of the regular season.

The likely 2014 American League MVP is batting .290/.380/.563 with 35 home runs, 110 RBI, 16 stolen bases, and 114 runs scored through 154 games played this season for the American League West champions.