It was meant as a throwaway line for laughs.
“I don’t know if it’s contagious, but I hope so,” Cubs manager Mike Quade said when asked before Friday’s game about the team’s recent spate of homers. “I don’t think Campana will hit one today, but you never know.”
Well, what do you know.
Tony Campana did hit a home run in the first inning of a 4-3 victory over the Reds. It doesn’t matter that it bounced off the left-field wall back onto the turf and past a fielder, it was a home run in the record book.
“As soon as it happened, I looked at (bench coach Pat Listach) and said, ‘You’re not going to believe this,’ ” Quade said.
Campana is the last player anyone would expect to homer. He had been through 1,058 regular-season minor league at-bats without one and 71 more in the big leagues.
So when was the last homer for the 5-foot-7, 165-pound speedster?
“Last year in the playoffs in Double A, inside-the-park,” Campana said.
Campana is known for his speed, and several opposing players have challenged him in races.
“I think that would be a fun thing,” Campana said. “I’d love to do that.
“They talk about other things to do at the All-Star break. Line us up and let us run.”
Campana became the first player in Cubs history to hit an inside-the-park homer as his first major league homer at Wrigley Field.
FANS GET FREE TICKETS
Florida outfielder Logan Morrison rewarded hundreds of his Twitter followers with something better than a retweet: He left them free tickets.
The Marlins made hundreds of tickets available for Morrison, so he posted an invite to his Twitter account — “Who wants 2 come 2 a Marlins game tonight?!? Ive got a BUNCH of tix for u guys. 1st come, 1st serve” — and those who responded with their full names got the freebies.
Morrison says he gave away about 500 tickets. It may be a one-time deal: Morrison says if he does it again, the team will charge him.
Mets first baseman Ike Davis will scale back his rehabilitation from a bone bruise in his left ankle and almost certainly will miss the rest of the season. … Orioles infielder Cesar Izturis was activated from the 60-day disabled list after being sidelined since May 13 with a right elbow injury. Baltimore also placed rookie left-hander Zach Britton on the 15-day DL with a shoulder strain. … Braves outfielder Nate McLouth had sports hernia surgery and will be out at least six weeks. … Athletics shortstop Cliff Pennington is back in the starting lineup after missing two games because of Bell’s Palsy. … Marlins second baseman Omar Infante was placed on the 15-day DL, one day after he broke his right middle finger diving for a ground ball. … The Indians placed infielder Jack Hannahan on the paternity list. … The Blue Jays hope Brett Lawrie will become their first Canadian-born star. The 21-year-old debuted against the Orioles after being recalled from Triple-A Las Vegas where he batted .353 with 18 home runs. … Padres reliever Joe Thatcher was activated from the 60-day DL, giving the team two left-handers in the bullpen.