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Be done with Dunn already

Published: Friday, Jan. 31, 2014 12:05 a.m. CDT

Adam Dunn says the White Sox’s acquisition of Cuban slugger Jose Abreu and re-signing of Paul Konerko doesn’t change anything about his primary goal, which is making the playoffs.

“Whatever to win, I don’t care," Dunn said during Soxfest. “There are no egos, especially with me and Paul. We talked about it when he was making his decision. Whatever is going to help us win that night, I know he’s for it, and I’m for it. That, to me, is a non-issue."

Give Dunn this: That’s the right thing to say. That’s the right attitude.

But there are two problems with Dunn: One, I don’t have a lot of faith he’ll feel that way in June, if he isn’t getting the playing time he’s used to; and two, the Sox won’t make the playoffs until Dunn leaves.

In 13 major-league seasons, Dunn has never made the playoffs. I don’t think Dunn has even made the postseason in a video game.

That’s not a fluke. It can’t be, not after all these years, not when we’re talking about a guy who always bats in the heart of the order.

The Sox need to dump Dunn, whatever the cost. General manager Rick Hahn continues fast-forwarding change on the South Side, but it will be slowed as long as Dunn remains. If the Sox have to pay his salary to move him, then pay it.

I tried to scream loud and often to get him traded last season. I'm a pleaser, not a teaser. But it didn’t work. The Sox weren’t going to make a deal where they paid Dunn $15 million or $20 million not to play for them, even though that’s a win right there.

Chairman Reinsdorf doesn’t like paying people not to work for him. I get that. But by keeping Dunn and forcing manager Robin Ventura to force Dunn into the lineup, the chairman might be paying a guy to stand in the way of someone’s development.

And there’s a third problem with Dunn: His power numbers with the Sox are the worst of his career. After three seasons, Dunn’s Sox slash line of .197/.317/.405 is the worst of any team he has played for.

Maybe he’ll get better. The Sox are betting the last year of Dunn’s 4-year, $56 million contract on it.

But Dunn is 34, so good luck with that.

I forgot – there’s a fourth problem with Dunn: I like the guy.

I’ve always found Dunn entertaining, in a self-aware way. He’s self-effacing, or at least honest about his failures. He’s unfiltered, and I like that. I like listening to Dunn. I like what he says, and I hate liking guys I want to trade.

So I’m going to stop reading what Dunn says and get back to trading him.

 

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