Shawn Camp hits skids after successful run
BY TONI GINNETTI email@example.com May 5, 2013 9:24PM
Cubs relief pitcher Shawn Camp works in the seventh inning of the Chicago Cubs 7-4 loss to the Cincinnati Reds Sunday May 5, 2013 at Wrigley Field. | Tom Cruze~Sun-Times
Updated: May 5, 2013 9:42PM
Carlos Marmol isn’t alone among the relievers who are struggling.
Shawn Camp has given up runs in his last two outings after making eight consecutive scoreless appearances. He blew a save Thursday against the San Diego Padres and allowed two runs in one inning Sunday against the Cincinnati Reds.
“There are two guys pitching well in the bullpen, and that’s [Kevin] Gregg and [James] Russell,” Camp said. “We have to pick it up.”
Camp said some hits are “finding holes” against him.
“I think the most important thing is getting ahead of hitters,” said Camp, whose ERA has climbed to 8.03.
“He’s really having a hard time getting anyone out right now,’’ manager Dale Sveum said. “His stuff has flattened.”
Sveum is mindful of the Cubs’ positives, including their work ethic and camaraderie. But their 11-20 record remains “the bottom line.”
“The positives are we’re swinging the bats OK,” Sveum said. “We’re putting ourselves in situations to break games open and win games and come back in games because our starting pitching has been so good. But the bottom line we all know is you have to win those games.
“Your patience can only take so much at times, but obviously the players are out there to do a job. The bottom line is production and getting jobs done. We just have to clean it up and somehow get those last three to six outs.’’
Outfielder Dave Sappelt is expected to be optioned Monday to Class AAA Iowa, with Iowa outfielder Ryan Sweeney expected to take his place.
Sappelt, a right-handed hitter, is batting only .178. Sweeney, a left-handed hitter, is hitting .346 in 22 games for Iowa.
◆ Reliever Kyuji Fujikawa pitched one inning Sunday at Iowa, walking one and striking out two. He will throw in one more game, probably with Class AA Tennessee. Iowa begins a road trip Tuesday.
◆ Starter Matt Garza (lat) is scheduled to throw Monday at Iowa as part of his rehab.