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Dunn, Back Where His Career Began

Adam Dunn, back in 1998, was drafted by the Cincinnati Reds. He debuted in the majors with them as a 21-year-old. He played 1,087 games for them. Then, almost exactly a year ago, he was dealt in a post-deadline trade to Arizona... which preceded his free-agent contract with the Nats, whose uniform Dunn wore on Thursday afternoon as he sat in the visiting dugout at Great American Ball Park. His first time back.

He held court with the media for a few minutes, greeting most by first name. "You lost weight?" he asked one. Later, with the cameras off, Dunn mused about even the smallest changes at the stadium. That strip of red paint on an upper facade -- brand new, he said. He also wondered aloud if any Cincinnati player this season had hit a sign beyond that right-center wall that, if dinged, would reward a random fan with a Toyota Tundra.

Not yet, he was told.

"This is the time I'll finally do it," Dunn joked.

Anyway...

Q: What does it feel like to be back?

This is the first time I've kind of stepped foot out here, had a look, and it looks red. It looks really red out here.

Q: Were you surprised last year, it almost sounded like there might be a contract extension and all of a sudden there wasn't. Did that catch you by surprise?

A little bit, yeah. I can understand that this is a business, and that's how it goes. They obviously did what was best for the organization, and I still think Mr. Castellini (the Cincinnati president), he's one of the best people I've ever met in my life. They'll definitely turn this thing around here.

Q: What do you miss most about Cincinnati?

Oh man. What do I miss most? I really miss the ballpark. I think it's a very, very good place to play. [Chuckles.] You know, I met a lot of great people here, man, that are really hard to replace, because you're with them day-in and day-out for X amount of years. So that's probably the main stuff that I miss.

Q: You're hitting the ball for average this year. What's going on? Have you changed?

I think I'm just hitting more singles; that's pretty much it. I don't feel like I've changed too much, other than I've gone to a heavier bat. But I don't think -- I can make up [an explanation] if you want.

Q: Well, you seem to have a lot more around you this year.

Well, our offense -- I was on some pretty good offenses here, too. This offense, it's a lot different of an offense. Each guy in the lineup works the count and this team can hit, man. This is one the teams, from top to bottom -- we've got guys on the bench that I think could play every day for a lot of teams. It's definitely a fun team. It's exciting offensively.

Q: Is it hard not to carry some bitterness?

No. I'm not bitter at all. I'm not bitter at all. I got an opportunity to play here for however many years I played here, and I enjoyed my time here. Like I said, I met some great people, and it's a business, I understand that. I don't hold grudges against anything. I think it worked out for a reason, and as long as both sides are happy it worked out.

Q: Were fans fair to you?

Fans are fans. I jump on my fantasy teams when they don't play well. That just means they care a lot. That's all you can ask for.

Q: You also have a tremendous amount of supporters here.

Well again, that's part of being a fan. I think you have fair-weather fans and baseball fans who support you through thick and thin.

Q: Are there things you're going to make sure to do this weekend?

Yeah, there are a few restaurants that I'm gonna go to. Probably go to the zoo. I love the zoo here.

Q: It's been kind of a tumultuous year there in Washington with Bowden and Rijo. What's it been like to live through all that?

You know, luckily that was early on; that hasn't been brought up in a long time. That was kind of an awkward moment, but I think Jim handled it as good as anyone could handle it, and he made it to where it wasn't a distraction.

Q: And you also went through a managerial change. What's that been like?

Not my first one. It's the same every time. You see a guy -- as hard as Manny worked, things just didn't pan out for him. He'll be back in the game doing well. And Jim has kind of brought a different attitude. But again, that's a part of the game. I hate to keep saying it's business, but that's what it is.

By Chico Harlan  |  August 13, 2009; 6:57 PM ET
 
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Next: Reds 7, Nats 0: Arroyo Throws Shutout

Comments

wow. where'd everyone go?

Posted by: NatsNut | August 13, 2009 7:54 PM | Report abuse

natsfan1a1: think Pok'e'mon names. Japanese Anime' names ...

Pretty "Old School" Japanese Anime' :

Gigantor, Astro Boy, Jimmy Sparks, Tobor the Eight Man ...

Posted by: periculum | August 13, 2009 7:59 PM | Report abuse

Personally I kind of liked Vampire Hunter "Z".

Posted by: periculum | August 13, 2009 8:00 PM | Report abuse

oh i see where ya'll went. Redskins are playing. and you call yourselves baseball fans.

Posted by: NatsNut | August 13, 2009 8:03 PM | Report abuse

Down 3-0 already ... 2 men on this last inning ...

Can you blame them?

Posted by: periculum | August 13, 2009 8:06 PM | Report abuse

Three zippy there as well ... its just an exhibition game ... when the real games start ... let's just hope that they don't end up like the Nats.

Posted by: periculum | August 13, 2009 8:07 PM | Report abuse

Not Colin's night, apparently.

Posted by: Section220 | August 13, 2009 8:10 PM | Report abuse

"Boom Boom" Balester.

Posted by: leetee1955 | August 13, 2009 8:19 PM | Report abuse

Folks might reconsider their opinions on JD Martin. He continues to improve ... just as he did in Syracuse when he started there this year.

Looks like Estrada may be next up, he's improved significantly down in Syracuse.

Posted by: periculum | August 13, 2009 8:19 PM | Report abuse

Estrada is not having the best night allowing 3 runs, 2 on a 2 run homer ... but no walks. 4 innings.

Posted by: periculum | August 13, 2009 8:22 PM | Report abuse

balester kinda reminds me of a young don sutton's pitching form. sutton was more of a straight up-and-down pitcher than a bend=your-back-drop-and drive type. sutton gave up tons of home runs in his youth with the dodgers.

Posted by: surly_w | August 13, 2009 8:27 PM | Report abuse

The Nats must not have packed the bats they used at home for this road trip. Being one-hit by a guy with a plus-five ERA? Sheesh.

Posted by: leetee1955 | August 13, 2009 8:30 PM | Report abuse

oh i see where ya'll went. Redskins are playing. and you call yourselves baseball fans.

Posted by: NatsNut | August 13, 2009 8:03 PM

who wants to watch a game where most of the players after the first two series are going to be driving UPS trucks by september?

Posted by: surly_w | August 13, 2009 8:33 PM | Report abuse

Wow. Have a day, Gomes.

Posted by: Section220 | August 13, 2009 8:38 PM | Report abuse

boom boom balester + boom boom bergmann = going....going...gomes! goodnight, gracie.

Posted by: surly_w | August 13, 2009 8:39 PM | Report abuse

3 HR : Gomes.

Posted by: periculum | August 13, 2009 8:44 PM | Report abuse

I'll have you know I make Duffy's give me a Nats pint glass instead of "the football team" glass...
************
oh i see where ya'll went. Redskins are playing. and you call yourselves baseball fans.

Posted by: NatsNut | August 13, 2009 8:03 PM

Posted by: Sec3mysofa | August 13, 2009 8:47 PM | Report abuse

I am enjoying the broadcast tonight (though not the game) with the return of Adam Dunn and Rob Dibble to Cincinnati.

In a post on another thread, I told the story of Dunn hitting a home into a piece of driftwood in the Ohio River. I always thought it was a fish story, but Dibble and Carpenter also told it tonight in the top of the 4th. Chico, can you ask Dunn if it is true?

Posted by: mherd1 | August 13, 2009 8:48 PM | Report abuse

Freakin' embarrassing!!! That's a AAA Team the Reds have. EMBARRASSING!!!

Posted by: big_game_lannan | August 13, 2009 8:48 PM | Report abuse

sec3, yea but what game are you *watching*? =D

Posted by: NatsNut | August 13, 2009 8:48 PM | Report abuse

>balester kinda reminds me of a young don sutton's pitching form. sutton was more of a straight up-and-down pitcher than a bend=your-back-drop-and drive type. sutton gave up tons of home runs in his youth with the dodgers.
Posted by: surly_w

The only thing he lacks is the massive leg drive that Sutton had. And that's the thing that gives your pitches a finish on them. That heavyness. Balestar's pitches are light because he doesn't thrust hard enough with his quads, and his follow-through is not bold. In the majors, you have to be willing to follow all the way through even though somebody could knock you out with a professional line drive. Or worse. That's why you have to be in the defensive fielding position when you come to a stop.

Posted by: Brue | August 13, 2009 8:49 PM | Report abuse

That said, a couple of Howard undergrads were wondering out loud, "The *Nationals* game?? Who's watching a ** baseball game **??"

I fessed up.

Posted by: Sec3mysofa | August 13, 2009 8:50 PM | Report abuse

Natsnut, I lost interest in the NFL when I moved to DC in 1994.

And Bronson Arroyo, this one's for you:
http://www.chm.bris.ac.uk/motm/methamphetamine/fatfreddy.gif

Posted by: Sec3mysofa | August 13, 2009 8:53 PM | Report abuse

Ugh. During our win streak, we averaged 7.125 runs per game. Now, should tonight continue the way it is going (and with only 2 hits through 7 innings, I'm not optimistic), we'll be shut out and have a total of 3 runs over the last 3 games. What the heck has happened?????

Posted by: BGinVA | August 13, 2009 8:55 PM | Report abuse

someone said last week they thought the new team goal was to have a winning record at home. These 3 games are supporting that.

Posted by: NatsNut | August 13, 2009 8:57 PM | Report abuse

Yanno, we really need a Tony Plush fan club. Dress in "wild and crazy guys" shirts and porkpie hats and shades. Let's meet at Duffy's, across from the 9:30, just because it's there.

Posted by: Sec3mysofa | August 13, 2009 8:57 PM | Report abuse

Gomes's homer story is already number at the top of the mlb.com homepage. How embarrassing.

Posted by: NatsNut | August 13, 2009 8:58 PM | Report abuse

Shades of Thrilledge: Padilla running the Hines Ward corner pattern to the ball, then missing it. Oh, I miss Tony Plush...

Posted by: jdschulz50 | August 13, 2009 8:59 PM | Report abuse

@Sec3: Count me in on any Tony Plush Fan Club gathering. Anywhere. Anyplace. Anyhow.

Posted by: jdschulz50 | August 13, 2009 9:00 PM | Report abuse

Of course, these are the same undergrads who were talking about "those Honor Roll students, they think they're better than everybody else!"

Well, if they're on the Honor Role, they ARE better at something.

Oh, they din't like that...

Posted by: Sec3mysofa | August 13, 2009 9:01 PM | Report abuse

OK, how's everybody with Saturday night's game at Duffy's?

Posted by: Sec3mysofa | August 13, 2009 9:03 PM | Report abuse

OMG, "ROLL"

Posted by: Sec3mysofa | August 13, 2009 9:04 PM | Report abuse

Knock Gomes on his a$$.

Posted by: leetee1955 | August 13, 2009 9:07 PM | Report abuse

This really sucks ... I think its time for another closed door "meeting" ... either that or its time to start swapping pitchers who still have options back to AAA for guys who really want to play.

Posted by: periculum | August 13, 2009 9:08 PM | Report abuse

So, does anyone know what nickname Plush had for Rob Dibble?

Posted by: Sec3mysofa | August 13, 2009 9:09 PM | Report abuse

The starting pitching was a problem during the winning streak, and they're a problem during this short losing streak. So they're consistent.

Posted by: Sec3mysofa | August 13, 2009 9:11 PM | Report abuse

"OK, one quick touchdown and we're right back in this thing!"

Posted by: Sec3mysofa | August 13, 2009 9:13 PM | Report abuse

Now I am really enjoying the broadcast with Dibble's 9th inning exposition on Skyline chili 3-ways and cheese coneys. Take me home! Chico, hit the Montgomery Inn boathouse after the game.

Posted by: mherd1 | August 13, 2009 9:15 PM | Report abuse

Those that refer to the Reds as a AAA team - well I'll take their lineup anyday, anytime over the Nats!

Posted by: bendersx6 | August 13, 2009 9:18 PM | Report abuse

Well, at least the execution was swift.

Posted by: leetee1955 | August 13, 2009 9:18 PM | Report abuse

looks like a shutout for the Redskins as well ...

As was said last year by a certain Raven: you guys were depleted.

Posted by: periculum | August 13, 2009 9:36 PM | Report abuse

You know, I've been down on Chico because of the floridity and the usage errors, but I have to admit that this kind of interview is insightful and I'm glad to have it.

For us old folks, we're going to have to transition away from perfection * Lord knows Chico ain't that* to content, flair, and honesty. Chico doesn't (yet) have Boswell's technical accuracy and sometimes thinks Grantland Rice is the epitome of sportwriters, but he also has content (e.g., the piece on Nyjer's stolen base percentage)and real perceptiveness about the human aspects.

Honestly, I would have fired his ass after the asinine Washingtonian interview -- but now I think I would have been wrong and should have chalked it up to his having been (a) young, (b) drunk, (c) sleep deprived, and (d) hung over from watching too many Tony Bourdain "No Reservations" tivo'd shows.

Posted by: Snopes1 | August 14, 2009 2:06 AM | Report abuse

It's a bad...bad day for Washington sports fans...

The gnats can't find a bat that will hit that little white spherical thing.

The 'Skins can't find a QB that will lead the team...

So sad...

Posted by: M20832 | August 14, 2009 9:05 AM | Report abuse

The comments to this entry are closed.

 
 
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