Cubs put Camp on DL; brass visits pitcher Gray
There might have been good reason for Cubs reliever Shawn Camp’s continued ineffectiveness this season. The Cubs today placed Camp on the 15-day disabled list with a sprained right big toe. They recalled right-handed reliever Rafael Dolis from Class AAA Iowa. The Cubs also said their top executives are meeting today with top draft prospect Jonathan Gray, a pitcher at the University of Oklahoma. More on that in a bit.
Just Monday, the Cubs designated right-handed reliever Michael Bowden for assignment. Hours later, Camp went out and suffered his third blown save of the season, as he gave up a go-ahead grand slam to Pirates pinch hitter Travis Snider in the sixth inning of a game Pittsburgh won 5-4.
Manager Dale Sveum told reporters in Pittsburgh today that Camp has had the problem for a month, but he did not say anything until seeking treatment Sunday. After that, he tried to pitch through the ailment, but was unsuccessful. One way to look at the situation is that Camp’s reticence cost Bowden his job. In fairness to Camp, most athletes are going to try to play through an injury like that.
Bowden outpitched Camp all year. In fact, Camp’s numbers have been brutal: 1-1 record, 7.56 ERA, 1.92 WHIP, a FIP of 5.79 and batting average against of .351. Bowden, on the other hand, was 1-2 with a 3.78 ERA and a WHIP of 1.14. His FIP was 3.27, and hitters were batting .230 against him.
Reporters in Pittsburgh today asked manager Dale Sveum why the Cubs didn’t DL Camp sooner and keep Bowden, and he is quoted as saying: “Because we didn’t know about it.”
On the other news, Cubs president Theo Epstein led a delegation to Oklahoma City to meet with Gray, the projected No. 1 or No. 2 pick overall in the draft, June 6. The Houston Astros pick first, followed by the Cubs. Either Gray or Stanford right-hander Mark Appel is expected to be taken first, with the other going second. However, San Diego third baseman Kris Bryant is an attractive target , as well.
Joining Epstein were GM Jed Hoyer, scouting and player development exec Jason McLeod and amateur scouting director Jaron Madison.
Baseball America says Gray “now works comfortably at 94-97 (mph) and can hit 100 mph while looking like he’s just playing catch.” He also features a slider and changeup.