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Posted at 1:30 PM ET, 12/ 1/2010

Report: Adam Dunn meets with A's [UPDATED]

By Adam Kilgore

The A's met with Nationals free agent first baseman Adam Dunn yesterday and are emerging as a serious candidate to sign the slugger, according to a report by Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle. The A's met with Dunn in Dunn's hometown of Houston, according to the report.

At this point, the Nationals appear unlikely to resign Dunn, who last night declined the team's arbitration offer. The Nationals have had a three-year offer on the table to Dunn since late in the offseason, but he is seeking a four-year deal.

If the A's were to eventually sign Dunn, the Nationals would be dealt a bad break of sorts. The A's have the 18th pick of the first round, the last protected pick in the draft. The Nationals, therefore, would be entitled to Oakland's second-round pick rather than its first rounder.

UPDATE, 4:40: Slusser corrected her report with a tweet early this evening, saying she's been told the A's had not met with Dunn. She also tweeted that the A's remain "in the mix," according to her source. Her full string of tweets can be found here.

By Adam Kilgore  | December 1, 2010; 1:30 PM ET
 
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Comments

Quote/ Beane is a tire kicker and Wolff is a slumlord. Nobody takes either of them seriously anymore /quote

Rhymes with

Pants is a tire kicker and Lerner is a slumlord. Nobody takes either of them seriously anymore


Posted by: Brue | December 1, 2010 1:52 PM | Report abuse

Reposting, since I went to so much effort to come up with these big thoughts...

Looks like things are in mid-season form around here. A few comments:

--Criticizing a first baseman for his defense is like criticizing a catcher for his footspeed. Dunn isn't any worse at 1B than Ryan Howard or Prince Fielder. That's not an issue.
--Money isn't an issue, either (other than the fact that the Nats don't want to pay him what he'll get elsewhere). At his age, with his numbers, he's worth four years. And he'll get it (my hunch is from the Cubs, but we'll see). He appears to be asking for fair market value so what's the problem with that?
--What's the alternative? Pena or Morse at 1B? Or even better, if you believe Kilgore that Willingham will be traded, Pena at 1B and Morse in LF? Hope they convince a good free agent OF'er to come here (when they won't pay a proven, current player what he's going to get elswehere)? Wait two years and cross our fingers that Harper is the next Ken Griffey? How are they a better team now and in the future following that path?
--I'm willing to cut Rizzo some slack because he seems competent and has made competent moves so far. But he's been blowing smoke so far this offseason about their plans and I'm not sure any big moves are on their way that will change my mind. Some "insider" types, like Jon Heyman of SI, seem to believe the Nats will make a real run at Cliff Lee but I'll believe it when I see it. It's only fair to wait until we see what the roster looks like when they break camp next spring, but it's hard to be optimistic about what we'll see.
--Now, more than ever, after working our way through Kasten, Bowden, F. Robby and Acta, the spotlight falls (where it should) on the Lerners. And it's not a pretty sight so far.

Posted by: baltova1 | December 1, 2010 1:58 PM | Report abuse

What about Dunn has changed in the last two years? He's pretty much the same player he was when he signed for 2 years and 20 mil with the Nats. At that point, he wasn't able to get a bigger contract from any team. I don't think the market has ripened any for him all that much. The reason I'm asking is that his agent has apparently said (according to MLB Trade Rumors) that he is looking at a starting point of 4 years and 60 million. I don't think he's worth 2.5 million more per year than Victor Martinez.

Posted by: Cavalier83 | December 1, 2010 2:19 PM | Report abuse

With Lee, it fairly obvious the naysayers will have a field day with him.

Offer him money and if he doesn't come we didn't offer enough because we are cheap. Offer the same he signs for and we needed to overpay. Offer more and he turn it down then it was just a pr sham. Offer him more and he actually comes here then we paid too much (because he would never come unless we offered him part of the Washington Monument).

He's not coming. Neither is Crawford. If your thoughts are we need one of them then we have failed then prepare to be dissappointed, but really you just set yourself up to be dissappointed.

Posted by: SCNatsFan | December 1, 2010 2:22 PM | Report abuse

Truth is Dunn really is inferior at Defense. Obviously the difference between an elite 1st baseman and a bad one is probably all of 5 errors, but he has poor range and movement from the position. He is slow and his arm reach is poor. Time to reach out to Pena or Laroche and start prepping for the Chris Marerro era.

Posted by: evanszy | December 1, 2010 2:40 PM | Report abuse

Kudos baltova.

Posted by: dfh21 | December 1, 2010 2:44 PM | Report abuse

I'm guessing that if the NL had a DH, the Nationals would be willing to pay more for Dunn too. But it doesn't, and they are not.


Posted by: natbiscuits | December 1, 2010 2:59 PM | Report abuse

Adam Dunn is looked at by some fans here as being so essential by virtue of their having watched a team since 2005 that has fielded so few legitimate performers that Adam looks like a star compared to what went before him.

But the truth is that winning teams are not lining up to sign Dunn.

None of the NL leaders are in a rush to grab him. None of the AL teams where Dunn would appear to be a good fit at DH seem inclined to get involved in the bidding.

You want to use Chicago as a gauge of what to do?

Please.

The Cubs wasted $136M on Alfonso Soriano.

They wasted MILLIONS on a series of disappointing pitchers over the past 3-4 years.

Lou Piniella, who was brought in to ride the talent to a championship, instead resigned after a fruitless term at the helm.

Should the Nationals become energized for Dunn because the A's or Cubs show interest?

No.

I wouldn't pay Dunn $16-$18M a year.

The Giants won the World Series with a first baseman that hit 26 homers and drove in 85 runs.

You don't need a 40 homer guy at first base to win.

If and when this team spends money it needs to be spent on positions that count.

Pitching.

Center field.

Shortstop (if Desmond is not the answer).

Catcher and third base have talent on the parent club.

Those are the key positions.

The others you can fill in with.

Posted by: RoyHobbs4 | December 1, 2010 3:00 PM | Report abuse

His arm reach is poor? The guy is 6 foot freaking 6.

Dunn is gone. Wish him well.

So, let's focus on who we can get. I'd prefer LaRoche over Pena.

With either and with the money off the books from last year (More than $35M off the books, I think??), the club has a LOT of money to ink/trade for a quality SP, a stud reliever and an OF upgrade. among other potential adds. I hope Rizzo is working this stuff out right now.

Posted by: dfh21 | December 1, 2010 3:01 PM | Report abuse

>I'm guessing that if the NL had a DH, the Nationals would be willing to pay more for Dunn too. But it doesn't, and they are not.

Posted by: natbiscuits

Just as long as you pay more for your tickets. I don't want to hear about you going on StubHub.

Posted by: Brue | December 1, 2010 3:13 PM | Report abuse

>So, let's focus on who we can get. I'd prefer LaRoche over Pena.

Posted by: dfh21

Morse over LaRoche. Give him 600 ABs and figure out once and for all if he can play full time.

Posted by: Brue | December 1, 2010 3:17 PM | Report abuse

RoyHobbs4, re: this point:

"If and when this team spends money it needs to be spent on positions that count.

Pitching.

Center field.

Shortstop (if Desmond is not the answer).

Catcher and third base have talent on the parent club.

Those are the key positions.

The others you can fill in with."

This would make sense except for two things:
1) At some point, you have to come to bat.
2) This sentence: "If and when this team spends money it needs to be spent on positions that count."

It's that "If and when" part.

Posted by: baltova1 | December 1, 2010 3:18 PM | Report abuse

If the Dodgers non-tender Loney, he would be my prefered choice. If not, I like LaRoche with a one year offer.

Posted by: natbiscuits | December 1, 2010 3:19 PM | Report abuse

The Nats failure to re-sign Dunn will represent a new level of suck-itude by the cheapskate ownership. Not only will they likely ensure yet another 90-100 loss season, but the good faith and patience of the ever shrinking fan base will be tested yet again. When is somebody going to shake the Lerners into realizing that running this team on the cheap is not the way to go.

Posted by: terrapin31590us | December 1, 2010 3:41 PM | Report abuse

Who wants to bet against the following scenario:

1. Dunn signs elsewhere (duh),
AND,
2. Nats DO NOT sign ANY significant free agent pitcher (starter OR closer) or other significant player with the money "saved"?
AND,
3. Zimm is gone as soon as he can go to a winner. Being stuck on a club this bad for this long has got to take its toll.

Anyone?
Nats are not an attractive destination for any FA due to a cheap owner & a LOUSY club for the foreseeable future.

Not a pretty outlook, but there it is. I truly hope I'm very wrong about all this (it is a worst-case scenario, after all).

Posted by: nyskinsdiehard | December 1, 2010 4:21 PM | Report abuse

People who say the fan base is shrinking, and that that's a problem, forget the Clark Griffith era, when the team was terrible, the "fan base" was miniscule, and Bob Wolf gave a new tie to the Senators' player selected for a pre-game interview. My sense is that Papa Lerner has a statistician telling him how today's box office revenues compare to Griffith's (adjusted for inflation), and if today's Nats by comparison come out ahead every month, then that's all Papa cares about. He's Clark Griffith reincarnated.

Has anyone seen him at a game?.

Posted by: JohnRDC | December 1, 2010 6:43 PM | Report abuse

I say do what you have to to get Lee and Greinke.

Posted by: AsstGM | December 2, 2010 11:54 AM | Report abuse

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