Campbell Wants to Finish Strong

Campbell returned from the DL on August 17th

BINGHAMTON, NY - Midseason injuries can be the toughest to overcome, especially when the injury comes amidst the best season of one's career. That is exactly what Binghamton Mets left fielder Eric Campbell had to deal with when he went down with a broken finger in June. Now Campbell is back and hopes to finish out the year with the type of play that gained him notoriety earlier in the season.

The 2010 season has been the best of Eric Campbell's professional career. His torrid start in St. Lucie, combined with Zach Lutz's foot injury, resulted in Campbell being promoted to Binghamton in late May to play every day at third base.

Campbell made a seamless transition to the Double-A level, continuing his hot hitting to the tune of a .315 average over his first 30 games with the B-Mets. Just like the man he replaced, though, he fell victim to an injury. He suffered a fractured left pinky in mid-June and was placed on the disabled list on June 23.

He returned from his injury on August 9 and played for about a week down in St. Lucie before rejoining the B-Mets. Campbell was disappointed with missing roughly seven weeks during the middle of the season.

"You never want to sit out a significant amount of time while the season's going on," he said. "I didn't really do much during the break. When I came back I tried to get back to where I was (before getting injured). It might take a little while but it's getting there."

The fact that Campbell was hitting so well prior to getting injured didn't affect his feelings about the ordeal. No matter how things are going on the field, nobody wants to sit out because of an injury.

"It (would have been) be frustrating even if I wasn't hitting well," Campbell said. "You always want to play. The fact that I was swinging it well…I just have to find it as quick as I can now that I'm back."

That has been the problem since Campbell came back to the Eastern League – he hasn't been able to get back into the groove he was in earlier in the season. In his first eight games with the B-Mets since returning, he's just 6-for-33 with two RBI and eight strikeouts.

Campbell says his pinky feels fine and hasn't had any lingering problems with it since coming back. He just needs to get re-acclimated to Double-A and regain his patience at the plate.

"When I was in St. Lucie I was feeling good," Campbell said. "Right now I'm probably just swinging at too many pitches, but it's something that will come."

The distinctions between High-A and Double-A aren't extensive, according to Campbell. However, he does concede that the level of talent is greater.

"Obviously every player is a little bit better," he said. "One thing I've noticed is the hitters have a better approach up here and make more consistent contact. Also, the pitchers are around the (strike) zone a little bit more."

With Lutz back in the fold at third base, Campbell has been the starting left fielder for the B-Mets as of late. A position switch mid-season can pose problems for a player, but Campbell has outfield experience and has no issues with where he's playing.

"I've played (left field) in Brooklyn and Savannah, and also St. Lucie. I'm a natural infielder but outfield, I'm fine with playing there," he said.

There are only a couple of weeks of the season left for the tumbling B-Mets. One of the things Campbell is looking to see during the home stretch is a string of victories so the team can finish the season strong, while also putting the finishing touches on what has been the most productive season of his career.

"Just (want to) help the team win. Hopefully we can go on a winning streak, get back to .500 and then you never know…and just stay healthy and play every game," Campbell closed.

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