Adam Eaton was a key part to one of the biggest trades in baseball this off-season, but one of the last people to learn about the trade was Adam Eaton himself.
When the Chicago White Sox acquired Eaton from the Arizona Diamondbacks on Dec. 10, general manager Rick Hahn picked up the phone to call his new outfielder. When Eaton didn’t answer, Hahn left a message. Arizona general manager Kevin Towers did the same. He called Adam to wish him well, but had to leave a voicemail. Meanwhile, the three-team trade that sent Hector Santiago and Tyler Skaggs to the Angels, Mark Trumbo to the Diamondbacks and Eaton to the White Sox became news at the MLB Winter Meetings with neither team speaking directly with Eaton to tell him that he’d been dealt.
There's an easy answer for that.
The White Sox and Diamondbacks were calling the wrong number. They were dialing the cell phone of Diamondbacks outfielder Tony Campana instead.
"They called Tony a bunch of times," Eaton said laughing. "I never got a call from anywhere."
Campana was on his honeymoon in Hawaii at the time and wasn’t near his cell phone. He certainly had some interesting voicemails waiting for him — like telling the former Cub that he’d been traded to the White Sox. Oh, and that his name was now Adam Eaton.
It was a simple error, but how could Campana be mistaken for Eaton?
Maybe it’s their size. They’re both two of the smallest players in the league, listed at 5-foot-8. Maybe it’s because they’re also both from Ohio and have the same 937 area code on their cell phones.
Either way, someone in the Diamondbacks office sent Campana’s number to Towers thinking it was Eaton’s, Towers forwarded the number to Hahn, they both left messages thinking it was Eaton’s cell phone, the trade happened, and guess how Eaton eventually learned that he had been dealt to the White Sox?
"Surfing Twitter. That's how I found out," Eaton said. "Eventually Hahn and those guys got my real number. I didn't hear from the Diamondbacks for about a week before they got my number. They just thought I was mad at them. They were like, 'He must be really angry with us. He really doesn't want to be traded.' Then they finally got the right number."
Now a member of the White Sox, Eaton feels he’s on the right team.
"I can't think of a better place for me to be,” he said. “The blue-collar, rough-and-tough-type side of the city. I'm ecstatic. I'm excited to play for these fans. And I hope as I'll appreciate them, they'll appreciate me for how I come to the ballpark everyday and give 110 percent."
White Sox fans are starting to get the message.