Nationals, Dunn Talked Extension Today

SATURDAY, 4:51pm: Dunn could be a fit for a number of American League teams next offseason, including the Red Sox or Rangers, according to Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports.  Boston could seek a replacement for David Ortiz while the Rangers, who are under new ownership, may be drawn to the Texas native.

Despite the fact that most baseball people view him as a DH, the Nats seem comfortable with the 30-year-old at first base.  In 66 starts at the position in 2009, Dunn posted a UZR/150 of -25.0.

FRIDAY, 4:49pm: GM Mike Rizzo said the Nats talked with Dunn about an extension this afternoon, according to Chico Harlan of the Washington Post. The Nats and Dunn both say they'd like to reach an agreement, but they hadn't sat down to discuss one before today and the talks are still in their preliminary stages. 

3:05pm: The extension talks are at "stage 0," according to this update tweet from Ladson. 

1:34pm: The Nationals are discussing an extension with Adam Dunn, tweets's Bill Ladson. Dunn, 30, is under contract for $12MM in 2010, but he's set to become a free agent after the season.

You get tons of power, walks and strikeouts with Dunn, but not much defense. He broke his personal streak of hitting exactly 40 homers per year at four in 2009 when he hit 38. His exceptionally poor defense limits his value, so he's likely to fit better on AL teams from here on.

38 Responses to Nationals, Dunn Talked Extension Today Leave a Reply

  1. Pseudonymus Bosch 6 years ago

    FWIW his “exceptionally poor defense” seems to have become only “moderately poor” after his move to first base.

    • Guest 6 years ago

      Yeah, Actually Adam Dunn cut down on his K’s, improved his averaged, sacrificed some power (only two less Home Runs), And didn’t play miserable defense.

      • $1529282 6 years ago

        I’m not sure what stats you guys are looking at, but a -25 UZR/150 is pretty miserable in my eyes. Granted, it’s hidden a bit more because it’s at first base and not a premium defensive position, but the guy’s UZR was 3.4 times worse than the next-worst defender (with a minimum 500 innings), Billy Butler.

        Dunn had a fine offensive season last year, as usual, but until this guy is a full-time DH, his defense will cost his team a great deal of the value provided by his offense.

        While I never wanna see it, it’s kind of fun to think about the video game stats that Dunn would put up as the full-time DH for the Yankees, Rangers, or White Sox.

        Personally, if I were Jack Zduriencik, I’d be banging down the door to get Dunn. I know they’ve got Griffey there, but there’s no ballpark that can hold Dunn’s power, and Safeco is more forgiving to left-handed hitters anyway. I’m sure Griff wouldn’t mind bringing back an old teammate and giving up a lot of at-bats to him if it meant a better shot at getting a ring in the twilight of his career. I know Jack Z is defensive-minded and all, but as long as you keep him out of the field or limit his playing time tremendously, Dunn helps that team a frightening amount.

        • ryanfromkings 5 years ago

          UZR/150 especially, and UZR in general are not very good gauges especially with such a limited sample size.

          • seandooley 5 years ago

            He’s terrible defensively, no matter how you look at it

  2. Surprising. Remember when he played in a playoff push one year and said he wanted to win?

    I actually saw him as a potential mid-season acquisition for the Red Sox if Ortiz struggles, but if he signs an extension that goes out the window.

  3. Now that he only hit 38 homers, the Nationals can’t afford his defensive liability? It’s not like anything has changed about his skill set since he signed with them a year ago.

    • tymyshwo1 6 years ago

      What are you talk about? The nationals want to sign him to an extension. MLBTR is saying he would be a better fit in the AL.

      • My original question was a joke; 38 homers, 40 homers, who cares. The Nationals like his power and they want to keep him. I’m saying nothing changed since he signed there last year. He has never been much of a defender. Is every defensively challenged slugger over 30 years old only allowed to sign longterm deals in DH-land?

  4. cookmeister 6 years ago

    If he goes to free agency, i could see the Red Sox snagging him if Ortiz struggles (maybe not though, i think the Sox might move Victor Martinez to DH and get another catcher), or i think the angels might grab him to be the DH. who knows

  5. billmelton 6 years ago

    My (somewhat biased)thinking here is that Ozzie’s “DH by committee” experiment is on a very, very short string by the organization ( there were multiple stories that Ozzie was the one to veto the Thome return, but that’s another story). If the experiment starts to falter early (either through lack of productivity or injury to the oft injured Quentin), look for KW to make a deal for a LH power bat as a permanent DH for the Chisox. Dunn, I think, would be high on that list. KW intimated this in a Scott Merkin article yesterday. He did not mention Dunn by name, but Dunn would solve a lot of the Chisox’s needs and the Cell is pretty power friendly. I wouldn’t be surprised if he makes a move for a trade this May or June.

  6. cookmeister 6 years ago

    the only problem i have with what you say is that the red sox have already pretty much said that if ortiz struggles that they will move martinez to DH and let Tek ctch or find another catcher

  7. sjberke1 6 years ago

    I agree that the Nats could probably get quite a bit for him in trade, and that his usefulness may be limited in the NL. I’m not sure an extension makes all that much sense at this point, considering that and considering that the Nats have a couple of warm-to-hot prospects in the minors who play 1B or may be shifted there (Marrero, Norris). That is, unless you are extending Dunn to increase his trade value…but I would think Dunn would want some sort of no-trade or limited-trade clause as a condition of any extension.

    • bjsguess 6 years ago

      How would the Nats get anything for him? You have guys like Matsui who produced similarly (offensively) last year signing for $6m. Is Adam Dunn really worth twice as much as Matsui + the cost of additional talent going back to Washington?

      I like Dunn a great deal but for a guy who only should be allowed to play DH it’s hard to justify a $12m price tag.

      • ryanfromkings 5 years ago

        Yes because even though he does it poorly, Adam Dunn still plays in the field, making him much more valuable than Matsui who can NOT play any defense.

  8. osfan3000 6 years ago

    i think it would be great to extend dunn. His defense was terrible in the outfield but once thye moved him to first base it seemed like a nice fit. Also Ryan ZImmaerman made alot less errors with him at first… maybe cause hes a HUGE target to throw at? lol but last year was his first time at 1st so i think he could get alot better at it if allowed to stay there full time. you cannot replace the power he has with jsut anyone and look at zimm’s stats with Dunn hitting behind him. He has a Great year at the plate with Dunn as protection. gotta look at alot of things. If he agrees to extension great, if not trade him.

  9. studio179 6 years ago

    Ha! They are talking extension…wait, talks are at stage 0.

  10. optionn 6 years ago

    Defense is all about reputation and media hype. Dunn probably plays better defense than Teixeira, but one of the reasons Teixeira gets 22 million a year is because of his defense.

    • R_y_a_n 6 years ago

      Or Dunn is really that bad on defense. Every defensive metric/stat says Dunn is terrible in the field and much much worse than Teixeira.

    • strikethree 6 years ago

      Please tell me this is a joke.

      Did you just equate Adam Dunn’s defensive abilities to Mark Teixeria’s defense?

      Yeah, probably a joke…

    • ryanfromkings 5 years ago

      Dude Tex has been nasty with the glove since day one. UZR rated him somewhat below average last year but a lot of people think that UZR has trouble rating certain positions, especially first base.

    • seandooley 5 years ago

      Have you watched both Dunn and Tex play? It is no contest

    • mattinglyfan 5 years ago

      No I remember watching him in the WBC last year at 1st base, Dunn is pretty clunky of a fielder. Orlando Hudson almost got hurt tripping on Dunn at 1st base during Dodgers/Nats game last year. He’s just too big.

    • (Takes out troll gun, shoots troll)

      Defense is about catching balls, and Dunn is pretty awful at that! (BLAM!)
      Texiera is a Yankee, and they know all about catching balls! (BLAM BLAM!)

      Plus Tex is a pretty great defender.

  11. griffincooper 6 years ago

    Extending Dunn just wouldn’t make sense at all. He is one of the worst defensive players in the game, him playing in the NL is just silly.

    • Ferrariman 6 years ago

      He’s been in the NL just about his entire career…

      • griffincooper 6 years ago

        Yep, and his defense has been absolutely awful since 2005. He belongs in the AL.

  12. ryanfromkings 5 years ago

    Seems that in the last 2 years people have started to overvalue defense quite a bit. When Adam Dunn hits 40 HR and has 100+RBI no gives a shit about defense, that’s why national league teams will give him a job, he’s durable and hits the shit out of the ball.

  13. vtadave 5 years ago

    Where are the F-Mart/Parnell for Dunn proposals? Must be Mets’ fans days off.

  14. coolstorybro222 5 years ago

    Just trade him during the season and get prospects. I mean clearly teams would want to have him.

  15. tomterp 5 years ago

    Dunn improved significantly at first last season, in his two seperate stints at the position. He makes a large target, and scoops throws very nicely. He needs to work on moving left or right, actually stopping grounders from getting past him, but showed enough progress to warrant further development. For sure, he does a lot less damage defensively than if he’s in the outfield.

  16. ryanfromkings 5 years ago

    UZR is not accurate over a 500 some inning stretch so to assume that he’ll be a -25 defender over 150 games is somewhat irresponsible. There’s no way to to say how bad Dunn may be as a first baseman over a full season until he does it for a full season. If he posts a -8 to about a -12 his bat will definitely outweigh that. Dunn isn’t especially athletic but, to be fair, first base can be learned.

  17. tymyshwo1 6 years ago

    Hes a perfect fit for basically any AL team.

  18. BoSoxSam 6 years ago

    The one reason I think the Red Sox are not looking closely at any DH-type player is they’ve already got that: Ortiz, technically Lowell (although I’ll be shocked if he makes it out of Spring Training with the Sox), and V-Mart. Martinez does not have that many years before he’s basically forced to DH; his catching abilities have never been great, and he clearly struggles every year in the second half. I bet you they are looking to move him to DH next year and fill the catcher role instead. Earlier I had thought maybe he would have moved to first instead, moving youk to third, but with Youk at first again this year I really think (hope, really) that he’s done moving around. He’s clearly a better first baseman, and by next year he’ll be getting older, which means the change will be harder to make. I bet you, next year/this midseason they’ll be shopping for a catcher and a third baseman, unless they pick up Beltre’s option.

  19. The Nationals have been known to covet Manny Delcarmen. Maybe Delcarmen + Lars Anderson or Michael Bowden?

  20. They’d never give up that much for him. They already have too many DH types, as mentioned, the guy is a FA next year, and his salary doesn’t provide a lot of surplus value. Delcarmen and a prospect maybe, at midseason if they felt he was needed. I don’t think the Nats would take that little for him, as they’d rather have the draft picks, so I don’t see any deal working out.

  21. soxfan6733 5 years ago

    please take Manny Delcarmen. sox fans can’t go through another year of him.

  22. badscience 5 years ago

    Or moving Youk to 3B and shopping for a 1B (AGon, please) and a C (who can throw out 30%+ of attempts, please).

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