Adam Dunn | Profile
The new White Sox player and home-run hitter should make for an exciting season at the Cell.
“I’ve tried it all, and I’m sticking with it.”
That’s the Yogi Berra–like philosophy of Chicago White Sox newcomer Adam Dunn, who over the last seven seasons trails only St. Louis Cardinals powerhouse Albert Pujols in most home runs in the big leagues. Pujols has 294; Dunn has hit just 12 fewer.
A consistent producer for seven seasons in Cincinnati (with shorter tours of duty at Arizona and his most recent stop, Washington), Dunn this summer figures to add to a White Sox legacy of prototypical left-handed power hitters: Harold Baines, Oscar Gamble, Jim Thome and Robin Ventura. When the season kicks off on Friday 1, the sturdy swinger will serve as the primary designated hitter for the team that won 88 games last season, good enough for second place in the American League Central, six games behind the division champion Minnesota Twins. (A first baseman by trade, he will also give Paul Konerko some days off in the field.)
“I’m happy to be here. I look good in black,” Dunn says, following a March morning workout at the White Sox spring-training complex in Glendale, Arizona.
The infectious personality and intimidating, bearlike presence of the six-foot-six, 285-pounder will play well on the South Side, where the identity is all about grind-it-out, no-pretense hard work.
“Adam has been one of the premier left-handed power hitters in baseball for the last decade,” says White Sox general manager Kenny Williams. “Coupled with his patience at the plate, we think he is a great fit in our lineup and in our ballpark.”
Grab your gloves, Sox fans: Dunn, coming off a 38-homer, 103-RBI effort last year with the Nationals, is likely to touch ’em all, early and often, at homer-friendly U.S. Cellular Field. Facing the Dodgers in a 2004 game at Cincinnati, Dunn launched an estimated 535-foot shot (now known as the Adam Bomb) that cleared the stadium wall at Great American Ball Park, bounced on Mehring Way and finally landed on a piece of driftwood in a part of the Ohio River that belongs to Kentucky. Baseball historians argued it was the longest home run hit since 1976, maybe ever.
Delighted to be in Chicago, Dunn knows the team has a legitimate shot at the World Series, and at age 31, he also understands the clock is ticking. “I finally got lucky,” he says. “I’m always the guy that buys five scratch-off lottery tickets, and the sixth one’s the winner.”