A Braves second-round pick in 2004, Eric Campbell bashed 18 home runs in the Rookie-level Appalachian League in '05, winning MVP honors, and then 22 more for low Class A Rome in '06. The third baseman wore out his welcome with the Braves, however, and when he stopped hitting (just .241/.308/.331 for Double-A Mississippi in '09), Atlanta released him. Campbell looked next to the independent leagues after the Phillies released him in '10 spring training, setting his sights on Fargo-Moorhead. He hit .311 with 22 homers in 302 at-bats for the RedHawks, helping lead them to a second straight Northern League title. The Reds signed Campbell last October and he's gotten off to an excellent start in the high Class A California League. The 25-year-old is batting .500/.561/.815 (27-for-54) for Bakersfield and leads the loop in average, on-base, slugging, doubles (nine), extra-base hits (12) and runs scored (21).
I don't know if those last two sentences are tongue and cheek or not, but a 25-year-old in A-ball should be crushing the ball. Campbell was always nice when I talked to him, and he had so much promise, but there were these questions that kept coming up about his work ethic, especially on defense. I wish him the best, but I wouldn't get too excited until he starts hitting in double-A.