2008 Reds / 2009 Reds

Reconsidering Adam Dunn

This guy, from Cincinnati CityBeat, says the Reds should reconsider Adam Dunn. GM Walt Jocketty says, in effect, forget it.

You know what we think here at Redleg Nation: if Dunn would consider signing here (and I wouldn’t if I were Dunn, after the way he has been treated by this city), Jocketty should pursue him. Especially since the bottom has fallen out of the market, and Dunn is likely to be forced to settle for a lesser amount than he had hoped.

There’s another thing we think here at RN: from the moment Dunn was traded, there wasn’t one chance in a million that he would return to the Reds in 2009. Reds management thinks too much like the mouthbreathers who call into WLW: everyone wants to focus on Dunn’s shortcomings (and he had plenty) rather than focus on the things he did well (most of which he did very well).

Yeah, I know a bunch of you are going to say that we should get over it. You’re probably right, I will concede. It’s just frustrating that the Reds are going to go with junk in left field this year, with the big guy still available.

38 thoughts on “Reconsidering Adam Dunn

  1. I think it’s just time to move on but frankly I wouldn’t be one bit upset if Dunn got resigned.

    I don’t think it’s right to call the soon to be left fielders junk though. Pretty much all the contenders are really just unknown. Will Dickerson be able to carry a strong but small sample sized 08 into 09? Will Hairston reproduce his career year? Will he stay healthy? Can Norris Hopper be healthy when the season starts? Will he be able to produce offensively? I’d definately say left field is a worrisome question mark but I don’t know about flat out junk.

  2. Well I believe it was ESPN who just posted that Dunn is looking for 4 years at $56MM ($14MM per). At that cost it is not worth it.

    Now if he does lower those demands because he does bring a lot to the line-up (also pretty bad at some things) then it is worth considering but its tough for a team like Cinci to consider meeting those demands.

  3. I love Adam Dunn and would enthusiastically welcome him back, but even I would be embarrassed for him if he was forced to come back to Cincinnati at a reduced cost.

    As Dana Carvey used to say: “Na. Gah. Da.”

  4. If Dunn will sign for a year or two… then sure, lets have at it. If not, I will take Dickerson out there (or get Abreu on a 1 or 2 year deal) and take my chances. I am not a fan of committing lots of money and years to guys who have their entire value come on one side of the baseball. Dunn’s defense sucks. Its not likely to get better given his size and age. So I just don’t like the idea of throwing money at guys like that for extended periods of time, especially when the Reds have 5 guys who could play LF on the cheap in the farm system by mid 2010 (Frazier, Alonso moving Votto to LF, Dorn, Dickerson and Francisco).

  5. Dunn is still one of my favorite players. Sure, he’s no ARod or Bonds but he’s good and he’s a favorite of mine.

    Having said that and in response to any “get over it” type statements. Sure, I’ll get over it as soon as the Reds sign someone to play SS, LF, CF, or C who is as good or better than Dunn.

    instead we get what we usually get, a player that is among the worst in the bigs, Tavares.

  6. Regardless of the HR/OBP/Runs scored numbers, Dunn isn’t a winning ballplayer. He drives in 100, but gives up 20+ with his poor range and another 20+ with his K’s…because there’s no chance for the runner(s) to advance or score on a sacrifice or an out. In addition, he’s not committed to conditioning and he’s not a leader.

    Jocketty GETS-IT….good riddance.

  7. I like Dunn, but I’m over him. “Adam from Milwaukee” was hilarious though. I’ll miss that. I’m actually looking forward to what Dickerson can do over the course of a year.

  8. i’d happily give dunn a 2yr contract. of course, he wouldn’t take it. nor should he.

    i am “over it” though, in the sense that i know it’s time to move on. the reds have (admittedly, shaky) options.

    so… let’s put dickerson and a platoon partner out there in left and hope for the best.

  9. Regardless of the HR/OBP/Runs scored numbers, Dunn isn’t a winning ballplayer. He drives in 100, but gives up 20+ with his poor range and another 20+ with his K’s…because there’s no chance for the runner(s) to advance or score on a sacrifice or an out. In addition, he’s not committed to conditioning and he’s not a leader.

    Move Dunn to 1B as part of the deal. Votto’s future is the OF anyhow with Alonzo soon to knock on the door. If you bat Dunn behind Taveras, the K’s don’t matter because he can steal his all the way to home. I do agree with the conditioning issue. I don’t agree with the leader statement though. What does he need to do? Slam teammates into lockers?

  10. First, I personally believe once Dunn signs it will become known that the Reds offered a deal close to Dunn’s current demand, but 1) Dunn’s agent overvalued the market; and 2) Dunn didn’t believe Cincinnati was a contender. Essentially Dunn said “stick it up your butt Jobu.” As a result, he was traded, and the offer came off the table. If he came back, it would be with his tail between his legs.

    Second, it isn’t in Dunn’s best interest to play in the NL. As a DH he has real value. The guy has a value wins (a variation of WARP) according to fangraphs of just 1.7 BECAUSE HE PLAYS DEFENSE! He should be a good fit for someone in the AL, but should shy away from the NL.

    I think the real reason Dunn wants to play the field is because he wants to improve his positioning to enter the HOF. It is next to impossible for a DH to make the Hall of Fame. If Dunn is a DH he will be known as a guy who is incapable of playing defense which will reduce his odds of induction among voters.

  11. I would love to have Dunn back, but I don’t think he is ever going to.

    I also think that his price is higher for non contenders and that if a team like the Braves or another perceived contender started talking to him, the price would go down some. If its only the Nationals who are talking to him, I feel like he’s probably less inclined to budge.

    I don’t feel like I need to run through some of Dunn’s statistics here, because those who like Dunn, already know and appreciate them and those who don’t like Dunn aren’t going to listen

    But I think that some people undervalue the offense he creates at the plate and overvalue what is lost in the field.

  12. I was Shocked when the Reds traded Dunn, he was fun to watch when he came up to bat. I too am “over it” and would NOT like to see Dunn back in Cincinnati. I feel like the Reds should turn it over to the young players and build for the future.
    I’ve grown very tired of the Reds trading off their young talent for so called veterans who come in for a year or so and then are gone with the wind.
    There is so much talent in the system that it would be a shame to not see it come to fruition.

    Dunn is gone, he needs to remember, you can never go home again!

  13. …Dunn wants to play the field is because he wants to improve his positioning to enter the HOF…”

    So, Dunn’s a comedian now?

    I’ve grown very tired of the Reds trading off their young talent for so called veterans who come in for a year or so and then are gone with the wind.

    Don’t hold your breath. Dunn’s an example of a young player whose performnce led him to believe he was worth more than the Reds were willing to pay. It makes no diffrence who is right or wrong. Players who follow carer paths like Dunn’s on teams like the Reds will almost always go elsewhere. The team will find someone cheaper, i.e., an old veteran to replace them. If the team was willing to pay for better performance, they would have paid to keep their own player.

  14. He is one of the best Reds hitters of all-time and a sure fire Reds HOF. So he’ll always be a candidate for discussion on a Red’s blog. Get used to it.

    Reds Career Leaders

    On-base % Rank Player OBP PA
    1. Joe Morgan .415 4973
    2. Dummy Hoy .390 2560
    3. Frank Robinson .389 6409
    4. Adam Dunn .380 4562
    5. Rube Bressler .379 2543
    Pete Rose .379 12325
    7. Heinie Groh .378 5159
    Cy Seymour .378 2420
    Curt Walker .378 3942
    10. Bubbles Hargrave .377 2671
    Edd Roush .377 5965

    Slugging % Rank Player SLG PA
    1. Frank Robinson .554 6409
    2. Adam Dunn .520 4562
    3. George Foster .514 5010
    Ken Griffey .514 3904
    5. Ted Kluszewski .512 5404
    6. Eric Davis .510 3819
    7. Wally Post .498 3313
    8. Lee May .490 3069
    9. Dmitri Young .488 2178
    10. Johnny Bench .476 8669
    Reggie Sanders .476 3292

    OPS Rank Player OPS PA
    1. Frank Robinson .943 6409
    2. Adam Dunn .900 4562
    3. Joe Morgan .885 4973
    4. Eric Davis .877 3819
    5. Ken Griffey .876 3904
    6. George Foster .870 5010
    7. Ted Kluszewski .869 5404
    8. Cy Seymour .841 2420
    Dmitri Young .841 2178
    10. Edd Roush .839 5965

    Home Runs Rank Player HR PA
    1. Johnny Bench 389 8669
    2. Frank Robinson 324 6409
    3. Tony Perez 287 7630
    4. Adam Dunn 270 4562
    5. Ted Kluszewski 251 5404
    6. George Foster 244 5010
    7. Ken Griffey 210 3904
    8. Eric Davis 203 3819
    9. Barry Larkin 198 9057
    10. Vada Pinson 186 6850

    Bases on Balls Rank Player BB PA
    1. Pete Rose 1210 12325
    2. Bid McPhee 981 9409
    3. Barry Larkin 939 9057
    4. Johnny Bench 891 8669
    5. Joe Morgan 881 4973
    6. Adam Dunn 755 4562
    7. Dave Concepcion 736 9640
    8. Frank Robinson 698 6409
    9. Dan Driessen 678 5487
    10. Tony Perez 671 7630

    Strikeouts Rank Player SO PA
    1. Tony Perez 1306 7630
    2. Johnny Bench 1278 8669
    3. Adam Dunn 1212 4562
    4. Dave Concepcion 1186 9640
    5. Pete Rose 972 12325
    6. George Foster 882 5010
    7. Eric Davis 874 3819
    8. Vada Pinson 831 6850
    9. Barry Larkin 817 9057
    10. Frank Robinson 789 6409

    Adjusted OPS+ Rank Player OPS+ PA
    1. Frank Robinson 150 6409
    2. Charley Jones 150 2189
    3. Joe Morgan 147 4973
    4. Cy Seymour 142 2420
    5. George Foster 140 5010
    6. Eric Davis 137 3819
    7. Edd Roush 135 5965
    8. John Reilly 132 4660
    9. Adam Dunn 130 4562
    10. Heinie Groh 130 5159

    Adjusted Batting Runs Rank Player BtRuns* PA
    1. Frank Robinson 404 6409
    2. Pete Rose 384 12325
    3. Joe Morgan 310 4973
    4. Johnny Bench 267 8669
    5. Tony Perez 244 7630
    6. Edd Roush 243 5965
    7. George Foster 231 5010
    8. Barry Larkin 194 9057
    9. Heinie Groh 190 5159
    10. Adam Dunn 183 4562

    Hit By Pitch Rank Player HBP PA
    1. Frank Robinson 118 6409
    2. John Reilly 94 4660
    3. Jason LaRue 93 2544
    4. Bid McPhee 87 9409
    5. Pete Rose 86 12325
    6. Heinie Groh 61 5159
    7. Adam Dunn 57 4562
    8. Barry Larkin 55 9057
    9. Jake Beckley 50 3824
    Sean Casey 50 4478

    At Bats per Home Run Rank Player AB/HR PA
    1. Adam Dunn 13.8 4562
    2. Ken Griffey 16.0 3904
    3. Eric Davis 16.1 3819
    4. Frank Robinson 17.1 6409
    5. Wally Post 17.6 3313
    6. George Foster 18.3 5010
    7. Lee May 19.3 3069
    8. Johnny Bench 19.7 8669
    9. Ted Kluszewski 19.8 5404
    10. Deron Johnson 21.8 2142

  15. Looking through the stats, don’t see too many guys named “Dummy” or “Heinie” anymore. Most guys fitting that combined description have been in the front office or managing the team in recent years.

    Sorry, I couldn’t resist. Seriously though, it’s pretty harsh to give a deaf guy the nickname “Dummy” – I guess it was fairly common then though since the (from Wikipedia) “first faceoff between deaf players in the major leagues” was between Hoy and Dummy Taylor.

  16. Nicknames were pretty much straight to the point back then….”Three Finger” Brown…for example. I suppose “Rube” Bressler listed above in Reds leaders says something about him, too.

  17. No surprise if Dunn eventually makes the local HOF, but I’ll be stunned if he ever makes the real HOF. He’s too flawed and, so far, he’s never played on a winner.

    The point, though, isn;t about Dunn’s stats or his abilities. It’s about the reality that when a young player like Dunn comes to a team like the Reds (or Kansas City or Pittsburgh, etc., etc.) and proves himself a star player with great potential, then he and the team will eventually be at loggerheads about salary. The player, often with good reason, will think he can get more money elsewhere. The team, often with good reason, will think it can spend the money more wisely elsewhere.

    The primary objective of a professional baseball team is profit. Winning is one means to that end. Let’s say Dunn wanted $18 million per year on a 3-year deal, with bonuses. The decision facing the Reds was not “Do we pay him that and hope we win?”. It was “If we pay him that will we make more money next year than we did this year?”

  18. How did the city treat him so poorly? I am just amazed at this thought process. That is like saying George Foster was treated poorly becasue the Reds could no longer afford him. At least he was a home run champ who was an NL MVP and sits at the stadium about every night signing autographs. I guess he feels really mistreated.

    Adam Dunn became a millionaire because of his stay in this town. My money went to help make that for him. Did he receive criticizm when it was due? Yes. But that comes with the territory and the millions. The way he was treated in this city? Give me a break. Its a business not a beauty pageant

    On his credentials for the Hall of Fame he certainly has the stats, but shouldn’t a Reds Hall of Famer have played on at least one Reds’ team with a winning record? There could be but I am not sure there is another Reds Hall of Fame member who didn’t.

  19. “No surprise if Dunn eventually makes the local HOF, but I’ll be stunned if he ever makes the real HOF. He’s too flawed and, so far, he’s never played on a winner.”

    I’d agree that he has age working against him for a shot at the MLB HOF, but he’s only got 7.5 major league seasons under his belt. If he were to remain consistently good & healthy for the remaining 10+ potential years of his career, I could see him accumulating enough stats to be considered.

  20. Paul Molitar sure made it as a DH and he was so injury prone when he played the field regularly that he would not have made it otherwise.

    I’m not even sure Dave Winfield makes it if you don’t include his DH stats.

  21. Local Reds HOFers who never played on a winning Reds team:

    Ken Raffensberger
    Ewell Blackwell

    Both pitchers from the 40’s and 50’s

    Steve Price

    Sam Crawford played on one
    Ken Griffey, Jr., will have one

  22. Raffensberger isn’t in the Hall of Fame, nor should he be.

    So that means 1 out of 75. Not great odds.

    If Griffey is ever enshrined, like Crawford, it will be because of his performance at a location other than Cincinnati.

  23. Sorry, you said Reds HOF….so I looked up Reds HOFers..and, yes, Raffensberger is in the Reds HOF.

    As for Reds players in the HOF who never had a winning record…

    Well, I disagree with the premise…that’s saying that one player gets you a winning season (in this case, Dunn). This isn’t NCAA basketball and Larry Bird at Indiana State Univesity…one player doesn’t do it.

    Frankly, I believe, management and ownership has far more to do with whether a team wins than the players.

    Obviously, the players have to give effort and have ability, but it’s not like the team is at the mercy of who shows up that day….it’s who they can sign, evaluate, manage, draft, and scout, while managing their money that makes the team…

    Even the 1869 Red Stockings folded after two seasons because management didn’t yet know how to balance the whole program…so, a new ownership team took the players to Boston and today we have the Atlanta Braves.

  24. How did the city treat him so poorly? I am just amazed at this thought process.

    Let’s see.

    1) Fans called him lazy.
    2) Fans said he isn’t a leader.
    3) Fans said he wasn’t willing to play 1B.
    4) Fans said he didn’t care.

    That looks like pretty shabby treatment to me.

  25. Just looked up something on Baseball Prospectus …the defensive stats say that Adam Dunn was an average fielding left fielder last year and that Jay Bruce was one of the worst right fielders in the league last year–didn’t have enough innings to actually qualify (and that Taveras is a superb centerfielder). The stats show Dunn’s RZR rating (a defensive metric from stats wiz John Dewan) was fourth in the majors last year at .899. Bruce was .884.

    I don’t know how the stat is computed, and, frankly , I’m not convinced, but that’s the second set of defensive stats I’ve seen this off season that said Dunn had a good year playing defense in left field…

    May be we’re going by reputation and not what we really saw….may be he was actually working at that part of his game?

  26. And the constant bombardment of criticism out of the booth from “The Heckler….because he didn’t fit Marty’s definition of a baseball player.

  27. And the constant bombardment of criticism out of the booth from “The Heckler….because he didn’t fit Marty’s definition of a baseball player.

    That sums it up so well. He didn’t fit a lot of the fans’ definition because they wanted him to be Johnny Bench or Tony Perez or George Foster, etc. He is an enigma to the average fan because he’s offensive abilities are unique and out of the ordinary.

  28. I don’t think players really care if fans call them lazy or whatever unless they do it to their face. Those multi-million dollar contracts provie a lot of solace.

    Personally, I found Dunn to be a frustrating player. Seems like he was always stiking out when players were on and the Reds were behind. “Seems” is the operative word since I’ve seen no stats on tht.

    But, if I was pressed for a tag phrase to characterize Dunn’s tenure with the Reds, I’d say “Missed Opportunity”, on his and management’s part.

    My assumption is the the Reds expected Dunn to sign up again, based on their obvious lack of readiness to fill the gap he left.

  29. I heard that as well on mlbtraderumors.com. I don’t see the fit. The sox are fairly stacked at DH, LF and 1B.

  30. Based on the Rosenthal article, there is some fear that Mike Lowell can’t come back from the hip surgery. If so, then Youkilis would go to 3B and Dunn to 1B.

    On another note, Andruw Jones gets released. Who will bite?

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