Everyday Adam Dunn
That Adam Dunn took an hour bus ride yesterday with a bad back so he could try to play speaks to something essential about him as a baseball player. He really, really likes to play.
Dunn has played in 950 games since 2004, third-most in the majors behind Miguel Cabrera and Ichiro, who both played 953. Last year, Dunn played 159. In 2004 with the Cincinnati Reds, Dunn played in 161 games. He played 160 games each of the next two years. But he's never played them all.
"I think that's plenty," Dunn said. "It's hard to play 162. I'd like to try. I love playing."
Here, he seemed to change his mind, mid-thought.
"I think that there are some days you need to take off," Dunn said. "You don't need to play 162 games. You don't need to. We got guys that are very capable of playing. I think about 155, that's a good number. You got to have a break."
All those games in all those seasons, and he's never gotten to 162. Dunn's approach to that speaks to something essential about him as a person: No big deal.
"I really don't care," Dunn said. "I got a lot of other things to worry about than playing 162 games. But I'll try this year. Do I think that's it's necessary? No."
Dunn uses that approach when dealing with his open-ended contract situation. Dunn would like an extension by the end of spring training, but by no means is he allowing it to consume him.
"I haven't heard much of anything," Dunn said last week. "I can't help that part. I can't negotiate. I don't know what's going on with all that. I'll just play, dude."
Meantime, while Dunn and the Nationals have the day off, Matt Chico and Scott Olsen pitched in the same minor league game. Jim Riggleman and other members of the Nationals brass were on hand to watch.
March 18, 2010; 2:00 PM ET
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