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Adam Dunn can't dodge trade talk

Adam Dunn has wanted to avoid days like today, when his name lands in trade rumors, for his entire career. "I hate this," Dunn said. "This is the part of the year."

Dunn, who is in the final year of a two-year contract with the Nationals, this winter and spring training expressed his desire to sign an extension with the Nationals so he could avoid hearing his name in trade talks. The sides have not struck a deal, and rather than reaching a long-term commitment Dunn and the Nationals might part ways.

The Chicago Sun-Times reported this morning that the White Sox have interest in trading for Dunn and the Nationals are willing to trade him. Members of the Nationals organization indicated nothing is imminent with trading Dunn, but it is also clear the Nationals will at least consider moving him. General Manager Mike Rizzo "would be open to anything that makes sense," one team source said. Also, a White Sox scout is watching the Nationals tonight in Atlanta.

And so Dunn, who has a .925 OPS and 17 home runs, will have to endure the speculation he wanted to squelch.

"I hate talking about it every day, because it's nothing that I can control," Dunn said. "I hate talking about it. That was one of the reasons why I wanted to get something done, to avoid this.

"That's a problem when you sign two-year deals and stuff like that. This is the stuff I've been trying to avoid. I hate it. It seems like every single year I have to talk about it. There's nothing I can do about it. Why talk about it?"

Dunn does not want to be traded. His preference remains signing and staying with the Nationals. "That's obvious," he said. "I hope it happens." The Nationals are aware of Dunn's wishes, which does not necessarily mean they will be granted.

"Basically, the ball is in their court," Dunn said. "They know what I want to do. If it happens, cool. If it doesn't, cool. Whatever. I'll play somewhere."

Dunn, though, reiterated something that may complicate a possible trade to an American League team like the White Sox or Los Angeles Angels. He has a strong aversion to being used as a designated hitter and would not like to be acquired by a team wishing to use him in that capacity.

"One hundred percent," Dunn said. "There's no doubt about that. I think everyone pretty much knows that's something I don't want to do at this point in time of my career. In four, five years down the road, maybe. As of right now, no."

In his first year as a full-time first baseman, Dunn has made four errors, tied for fifth most in the National League. Dunn has a -3.3 UZR/150, which is below league average but much improved from his performance last year and far from disastrous.

Dunn said no one from the Nationals' front office has discussed his immediate future with him, which is fine with Dunn. "They don't have to," he said. "It's not their job. They're going to do what's best for this team."

By Adam Kilgore  |  June 29, 2010; 6:45 PM ET
Categories:  Adam Dunn  
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Next: Game 78 discussion thread: Nationals at Braves

Comments

They better not trade Dunn. Those idiots better realize that can't get another big bat that good for that kind of money. If they trade him, their pledge to improve the team is pure BS. He's the only true power hitter they have.

Posted by: futbolclif | June 29, 2010 6:55 PM | Report abuse

I agree with futbol but they can listen. For those UZR fans, The White Sox SS has the highest in the majors --far ahead of Desmond. But they probably don't want to trade him for Dunn. Just kiddin'.

Posted by: longhorn64 | June 29, 2010 7:07 PM | Report abuse

I hope we can keep him.

Posted by: PattyinSJ | June 29, 2010 7:15 PM | Report abuse

Hey Gang-well...to second dargreg-what's up with Marquis Grissom? All agree that "something's missing" in Nyjers game...Couldn't find him working for any other MLB team (I'm not a great 'net researcher) but it appears he has a youth baseball league he supports in Georgia, where he lives....so mebbe he's in the neighborhood? Chat him up, Nyjer! Looks like he is not with any team at the moment (I did find a blurb by Ladson from November '09 saying the Nats had released him-no explanation for why-also saying he'd been offered another job in the organization. And everything I read on him noted his general excellence as a human being-y'know..a "good chemistry" kinda guy...)
Go Nats!!!

Posted by: zendo | June 29, 2010 7:26 PM | Report abuse

Cripes, one of the best, most consistent power hitters in the league who's at least adequate at first, and we're playing cutsie about re-signing him, when we have so many other glaring problems.

Posted by: gilbertbp | June 29, 2010 7:27 PM | Report abuse

Hey Gang-yea, gilbert...business as usual, huh? Maybe we come in second in the off season for, oh...Carl Crawford or Adrian Gonzalez...and we say "see...we really tried....we really ARE willing to spend the money ....for the right player..."
Yea. Unhuh
Go Nats!!!

Posted by: zendo | June 29, 2010 7:42 PM | Report abuse

Re-sign Dunn!

Posted by: mjwies11 | June 29, 2010 8:22 PM | Report abuse

I'd be willing to do a Beckham for Dunn swap then offer Dunn a deal in the offseason haha...

Posted by: Imjustlikemusiq | June 29, 2010 8:37 PM | Report abuse

Dunn is a prototypical American League player and he should be excited that a contender in the AL wants him. I like him and would like to see him stay, but, if they can get better by trading him, do it. This crap about, if they trade him their pledge about improving the team is BS, is... well... BS. The overall record with Dunn is not very good; I am not saying that it is his fault, but the Nats need to get better players who can field and hit and to do that they have to trade marketable players.

Posted by: Phillip258 | June 29, 2010 8:42 PM | Report abuse

The whole notion of trading Adam Dunn makes me extremely angry. He's near the top of the league in HR, quietly knocks in a lot of runs and has consistently improved at 1b. His presence in the lineup makes everyone -- particularly Zimmerman -- better. This team is going to be horrible if they trade Dunn. They are in a discouraging tailspin and at this point should be looking to improve the lineup not tear it down. Give Dunn his contract!!!

Posted by: raymitten | June 29, 2010 9:00 PM | Report abuse

I like Dunn for a whole host of reasons, but if somebody dangles a Hanley Ramirez-quality prospect or two, you have to listen.

We can, essentially, go out and get another slugger with below average fielding. This is how we got AD. He was neither washed up nor as good as he looks now, when we tabbed him. This is the arc of his value, so we dangle him.

Sorry pal. Verily, it stinketh.

Posted by: info_stuporhighway | June 29, 2010 9:13 PM | Report abuse

Forest for the trees people. Welcome to building a baseball team.

Trading Dunn now makes perfect sense if they can get value for him. Be glad we've got owners with an actual plan.

Yes, he's been one of the few bright spots in an offense that hasn't had many this year, but he'll be 31 in November, and on the downward slope of a productive but pretty average career. He's hardly irreplaceable.

This team has their eye firmly on 2012 / 2013 as years they'll begin really contending. Dunn will be done by then, so move him now. I say do the same with Willingham.

Posted by: prw46 | June 29, 2010 9:52 PM | Report abuse

Anyone else noticed that #44 looks heavier & softer now then at the start of the season?

Posted by: Smoca021 | June 29, 2010 9:54 PM | Report abuse

I'm completely with Dunn on this, it stinks to deal with it, but that's the way this has to play out.
Rizzo would be foolish to not listen to offers.
So we just wait this out, nothing else to do.
I'd like to see Dunn stay though.

Posted by: Sunderland | June 29, 2010 9:57 PM | Report abuse

ps - surely everyone remembers the summer of Soriano, where Bowden et al blew it and we ended up getting zip for him. Consider it a good sign that the front office is now smartly considering getting value for pieces that won't be part of the bigger puzzle down the road.

Posted by: prw46 | June 29, 2010 10:00 PM | Report abuse

Sign the man, Rizzo!

Posted by: shepdave2003 | June 29, 2010 10:30 PM | Report abuse

prw46, obviously you missed the fact that Soriano was offered arbitration and because of this we were able to get the draft pick which was used for Jordan Zimmermann. Dunn is a type A free agent right now. If he stays the rest of the season we offer arbitration. If he accepts we get him for another year, if he walks we get 2 draft picks.

If they are going to trade him they need to keep that in mind and make sure it is something in return as good as those picks would be.

Posted by: peytondowdy | June 29, 2010 10:51 PM | Report abuse

I love Adam Dunn - what a good man. I hope they keep him but if they trade him, he will be a monster DH for a hot AL team.

I wonder what the Nats would receive?

Posted by: nativedc | June 29, 2010 10:54 PM | Report abuse

Get 'er Dunn, Rizzo! The man wants to be a Nat.

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | June 29, 2010 11:09 PM | Report abuse

So um, why have we not yet re-signed Dunn?

Posted by: mcgratsp | June 30, 2010 1:35 AM | Report abuse

i live in chicago,and i hope the white sox can acquire adam dunn. paul konerko is having a good season, but is in the last year of his contract.

i would have to see if dunn can sign an extension, before i would consider what kind of compensation, the nats would want for him.

dunn can alternate between 1st, left field, and dh. i hope something can be worked out, the sox need a lefty bat,with power, and miss thome.

Posted by: sydny913 | June 30, 2010 3:18 AM | Report abuse

Trading Dunn would be a mistake - for both the Nationals and the other team. The Nationals need Dunn, for he's been the rare offensive power so far. And the other team - do they realize Dunn would probably just leave them after the season is over ?

I'd rather see the Nationals trade Zimmerman and Desmond.

Posted by: mnbvcx | June 30, 2010 8:18 AM | Report abuse

I completely agree with peytondowdy.

If the Nats trade Dunn, they would have to get a package of players that is at least as good as the two draft picks they would get if they offer him arbitration after the season and he does not accept it. I'm sure Rizzo knows this and is considering it when listening to these offers.

The Nats are currently 11 games back in the NL East and have the 4th worst record in the National League. It is time to start trying to make trades to improve the team for years to come.

Rizzo would be stupid to not listen to offers for Dunn, Willingham, Guzman, Kennedy, Morgan, Livan, Capps, Clippard, and basically anyone not named Zimmerman, Desmond, Storen, or Strasburg.

A few points not being mentioned here:

1) The Nats could always trade Dunn and then resign him in the off-season. Dunn has said he wants to play in the National League and he wants to play for the Nats. However, if the Nats trade him and then that team offers him arbitration, the Nats would have to GIVE UP 2 draft picks to sign him. So it really depends on the quality of the players Rizzo is offered. He's not just going to give him up for nothing.

2) The article from Chicago linked above says that the White Sox don't really have a lot in the way of prospects after trading for Peavy and Pierre last season. I wouldn't be surprised if these "Dunn to the ChiSox" rumors die down pretty quickly.

3) All this talk about Dunn being an AL player and only being a DH is crap. There are plenty of guys who have been pretty bad on defense but remained in the NL. Carlos Lee (career UZR:-19.8 and UZR/150: -2.4) has played in Houston for years. The Dodgers traded for Manny and then resigned him, and it wasn't for his glove, his hustle, or his dreadlocks. The Mets just gave Jason Bay a huge contract even though his career UZR is -57.7 and UZR/150 is -8.2. The fact is Dunn wants to play in the NL and if he becomes a free agent I bet he will sign with an NL team, even if it is for less money than he could have got from an AL team planning to put him at DH.

4) I still have hope that the Nats can turn it around this year. As bad as the last month has been, if July and August are more like April, then the Nats are right back around .500 going into September.

I think the Nats will trade Livan, Guzman, Clippard, and maybe Capps. I think we will be hearing Dunn trade rumors all summer, including after the trading deadline, when he would have to pass through waivers first. Maybe some team will get really desperate at the end and offer up a top-of-the-rotation starter and a CF.

Remember how awesome we thought Rizzo was last summer? He's still that same guy. In Rizzo we trust.

Go Nats!

Posted by: SpashCity | June 30, 2010 8:25 AM | Report abuse

Dunn provides way too much to the Nationals in terms of leadership, and he may be one of the more underated bats in the game, he is just getting to his prime. A trade, unless you are getting a 2nd Ace pitcher would be suicide.

Posted by: alex35332 | June 30, 2010 9:05 AM | Report abuse

Considering Dunn is one of the few National's batters that scares opposing pitchers, trading Dunn would be a mistake.

Maybe Rizzo should ask Zimmerman if he likes Dunn protecting his batting spot or Strasberg if he would prefer some run support?

Git er' Dunn, Rizzo!

Posted by: clandestinetomcat | June 30, 2010 9:27 AM | Report abuse

peytondowdy -

Didn't forget that the Nats gained a couple of picks, one of which ended up as Jordan Zimmerman. But I wouldn't be prepared to call Zimmerman a worthwhile commodity yet. If he gets healthy and turns into a solid 2 or 3 then yeah - picks will have been the better end of the bargain rather than trades that were out there. If he ends up being a bust, then yeah - we got zip.

Posted by: prw46 | June 30, 2010 9:48 AM | Report abuse

I think trading Dunn is a ridiculous idea! Who would you trade him for? Another Adam Kennedy like player that can't field or hit? He might be in a little slump right now but I know he'll make adjustments. I don't hear any trade talks about Zimmerman who is mired in a huge slump and has just as many errors, if not more, than Dunn.

Posted by: burnie4241 | June 30, 2010 9:49 AM | Report abuse

If Rizzo could actually evaluate value, we wouldn't have Adam Kennedy who, from what I've seen so far, was not worth whatever was done to get him. Heck, they can't even settle on a right fielder. Me being the mere fan that I am could see that Bernadina should have been there every game. Why would any team trade a valuable first baseman for a valuable first baseman?

Posted by: burnie4241 | June 30, 2010 9:57 AM | Report abuse

I just don't know what you people see in Dunn. Most of his at-bats are worthless. It's either strike out or solo HR. His BA with men in scoring position is .213, less after last night. I'd trade him AND Zimmerman. They get nothing from either.

Posted by: lp_lodestar | June 30, 2010 10:04 AM | Report abuse

>So um, why have we not yet re-signed Dunn?

Posted by: mcgratsp

You mean, why didn't they sign him for four years initially. That way, if you wanted to trade him, at least you could get something for him. Now, he's only a three-month rental. Well, Bowden said himself that he wanted 4 years, but the owners didn't.

Posted by: Brue | June 30, 2010 10:35 AM | Report abuse

SpashCity Are You Retarded?

Capps is 26, Clippard is 25, Willingham is 31, and Dunn is only 30 and in baseball that is NOT old. He is in his prime. This team needs assets, not to lose assets. How in the world can you say they should listen to trade offers for players that should be off limits. I do not want to hear how we should trade everybody because we are not ready to compete until 2012-2013 because come 2012-2013 they still will not be ready to compete and they will still be getting rid of players for the same damn reason your making now. This crap must stop and a real team must be assembled. They have pieces but they need to ADD to it not subtract from it. GOOD LORD PEOPLE!!!!!!!!!!

-------------------------------------------
If the Nats trade Dunn, they would have to get a package of players that is at least as good as the two draft picks they would get if they offer him arbitration after the season and he does not accept it. I'm sure Rizzo knows this and is considering it when listening to these offers.

The Nats are currently 11 games back in the NL East and have the 4th worst record in the National League. It is time to start trying to make trades to improve the team for years to come.

Rizzo would be stupid to not listen to offers for Dunn, Willingham, Guzman, Kennedy, Morgan, Livan, Capps, Clippard, and basically anyone not named Zimmerman, Desmond, Storen, or Strasburg.

Posted by: frediemac1 | June 30, 2010 12:06 PM | Report abuse

Trading Dunn at this point and time makes no sense, who can replace his 39 hR's and 100 plus RBI, Chris Marrero is in AA I more than likely is not ready for the MAjor League Team or he would be in AAA. NATS are trying for a team to give up two prospects that are ready for the Majors one of which would be a front line starter in the rotation.

Posted by: NATS61 | June 30, 2010 12:10 PM | Report abuse

One word for trading Dunn - Stupid.

There's maybe five power hitters like Dunn at any time in baseball. As soon as we get the prospects and start competing, all we'll need is a big power hitter to make us competive - however, they are almost never available (I mean,who'd be stupid enough to trade Adam Dunn?).

His professionalism and work ethic (evidenced by his clear improvement in BA and fielding in the two years he's been here) will by sorely missed from Riggleman's squad.

Posted by: bflorhodes | June 30, 2010 12:22 PM | Report abuse

Resign him. Who are you going to find in the free agent market thats a better fit for this team?

Create a need by trading Dunn and then fill the need with someone thats not as good as the player you had. Makes no sense to me at all.

You don't need to rebuild at first base. You have one. Try second, shortstop or center field. Commonly referred to as, "Up the middle".

You are really going to alienate the fans if you get rid of Dunn. Everybody loves the bubble gum chewing home run hitter. Don't mess it up.

Posted by: muddapucker | June 30, 2010 2:02 PM | Report abuse

In case anyone is wondering, here's what the Reds got for Dunn last time he was traded as a rental to the D-Backs...

http://www.usatoday.com/sports/baseball/2008-09-12-dbacks-reds-trade_N.htm

Micah Owings
http://www.baseball-reference.com/players/o/owingmi01.shtml

Dallas Buck
http://www.baseball-reference.com/minors/player.cgi?id=buck--001dal

Wilkin Castillo
http://www.baseball-reference.com/minors/player.cgi?id=castil001wil

Posted by: Kev29 | June 30, 2010 2:14 PM | Report abuse

Who are you going to find in the free agent market thats a better fit for this team?

Posted by: muddapucker | June 30, 2010 2:02 PM

Umm, Adam Dunn

Posted by: Kev29 | June 30, 2010 2:16 PM | Report abuse

I just like to know when will this team be complete?
Rebuilding that's all i hear,when do we get the final product?

Keep the guy he's there only hope this year to make it worth watching them this season.

Oh and my new favorite pitcher. :)

Posted by: shamken | June 30, 2010 2:34 PM | Report abuse

@frediemac1

I said I think they should LISTEN to offers, not trade away the whole team. Just listen. See whats out there. See which teams might be interested in our guys. See what those teams have to offer. I agree our players are good, and if we trade them, we better be getting good prospects in return, preferably guys who are close to major-league ready.

This past off season, the Tigers traded away a 29-year-old, All-Star center fielder by the name of Curtis Granderson. But what did they get? A young major league tested starting pitcher (Max Scherzer), 2 major league relievers (Coke and Schlereth) and a center field prospect who is currently hitting .309 with 13 stolen bases (Austin Jackson), in the major leagues! They got 4 major league players for the price of one.

I'm not saying the Nats should trade Dunn, I want them to resign him. But if somebody puts a deal like that on the table, Rizzo would be stupid not to consider it. The same goes for any other of our players. A team that is 11 games back at the beginning of July can't say they have a good team and that all their players are "off limits".

Yes we are better than last year, and that is because Rizzo knew when to pull the trigger on certain deals and there were probably other deals offered that he didn't make that we never end up hearing about.

That is how you assemble a good team, not by keeping all of the players that have led you to a 34-44 record.

Posted by: SpashCity | June 30, 2010 2:36 PM | Report abuse

I'm sorry but I am getting very tired of seeing Dunn strike out.

Posted by: MKadyman | June 30, 2010 4:27 PM | Report abuse

Dunn IS a piece of the puzzle. He makes Zimmerman that much more effective - his fielding is actually much better than anyone anticipated - and most importantly, he's a strong character guy and a leadership presence. I think the best thing the Nats can do at this moment is re-sign him and see how it lifts the team. Of course he has value now, he's one of the best and most productive power/clean-up hitters in the game. He's not a guy you trade away unless you can get the entire White Sox starting pitching staff.

Posted by: AsstGM | June 30, 2010 4:39 PM | Report abuse

The reality is that Dunn is a very finesse power hitter who strikes out a lot looking. This team needs consistent defensive players that will complement the young starting pitchers instead of being a liability to them. Trade Dunn while he still has value and get a young dependable defensive player back in return. I would take 2-1 wins with no error than watching a 8-7 losses with 4 errors any day!

Posted by: JohnWWW | June 30, 2010 4:53 PM | Report abuse

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