According to multiple reports Saturday night, Tyler Colvin could be looking at a trip to the minors in the near future. Mike Quade is not playing Tyler Colvin and when he has Colvin has looked lost at the plate. Quade had Blake DeWitt in his starting lineup Sunday in left field further proving that the team has lost confidence in Colvin.
Updated – 1:28pm CDT – Tony Campana could be an option if Colvin is sent down. The Cubs have mishandled Tyler Colvin from day one. Colvin produced last season in spite of consistent playing time.
Tyler Colvin forced the Cubs hand last spring with an outstanding performance in the Cactus League. When he was given playing time in April (.289/.365/.600/.965 with three doubles, a triple and three home runs in 22 games) and May (.333/.367/.667/1.033 with three doubles and two home runs in 23 games) he produced at the plate and was more than adequate in the field.
Colvin cooled off after the break (.246/.318/.469/.787 with eight doubles, four triples and eight home runs in 55 games) before his season ended abruptly on September 19.
After the trade that sent Derrek Lee to the Braves, talk was that Colvin would receive time at first base. Once Lou Piniella stepped down, the thought of Tyler Colvin playing first base was soon quieted. The Cubs were well out of the race at that point and could have used the remaining games to see if their former first round draft pick could play first base and in turn keep them from having to sign someone in the off-season to fill the role.
The Cubs decided to let Colvin play out the year in the outfield instead. Colvin continued losing playing time during a lost season in which the Cubs should have had an eye toward the future and seeing if young players, such as Colvin, had the ability to be Major Leaguers.
Colvin has struggled mightily this season (.113/.191/.258/.449 with three doubles and two home runs in 28 games, 62 at bats, 0-for-last-11) while only starting one game since April 28. Quade played him early in the season against lefties and once again the Cubs did not put him in a position to succeed.
“It’s been awful for Tyler, it really has,” Cubs manager Mike Quade said. “There’s no other way around it. I haven’t been able to find as many (spots) as I want. And other people are as responsible for that as Tyler is. Tyler got in a tough situation where a lot of guys were swinging the bat well and he was struggling … it’s a heck of a balance to come in here every day and try to keep him involved and get him to where he was last year while you’re also trying to win ballgames and do justice to a club that’s got other guys hitting.”
When asked about Colvin being sent to the minors to receive regular playing time, Mike Quade said, “We need to get him involved someway, somehow. That’s been on my mind for the past few days. We’re going to see how this homestand plays out and take a look at that.”
The bottom line with Tyler Colvin is that no one, including the Cubs, knows if Tyler Colvin could be a productive everyday player at the Major League level. Cubs’ management has not given him a consistent chance to succeed … or fail.
Updated – 1:28pm CDT – Tony Campana could be an option for the Cubs if Colvin is sent down. Cubs would have to add Campana to 40-man roster, which currently stands at 39. Campana is a favorite of Bobby Dernier.