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Did Dunn used to be a speedster?

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  • Did Dunn used to be a speedster?

    I just saw Adam Dunn's minor league stats, and I was quite surprised. IN 1999 and 2000 he had 1 total of only 27 home runs in 2 seasons. Granted, they were short seasons, total of about 730 at bats..but the low home run total surprised me. What amazed me even more was his total of 45 steals, and 15 CS in the two seasons. he also stole 19 bases one year early in his MLB career.

    I'm guessing, that at 6'6" and 285, Dunn was always a big guy..but did he actually used to be fast?

  • #2
    As a prospect Dun was considered an athletic big man. He briefly went to University of Texas to play QB and was the backup to Major Applewhite. When the Longhorns recruited Chris Simms Dunn left UT to concentrate on baseball. Dunn has gained a lot of weight as he's gotten older. On his 2001 baseball cards he was listed at only 235-240 lbs. In the minors Dunn was considered "toolsy" and fast for his size. Here's a retrospective of Dunn by John Sickels from 2007. Funny how Austin Kearns was considered the better prospect. And it wasn't for a severe shoulder injury Kearns would have been a star in the majors IMO.

    Adam Dunn Prospect Retro

    Adam Dunn was drafted by the Cincinnati Reds in the second round of the 1998 draft, out of high school in New Caney, Texas. He was considered a possible first round talent, but a football scholarship to Texas scared some teams away; the Reds signed him and agreed to let him play football, but Dunn dropped the gridiron quickly and turned to baseball full-time. Dunn hit .288/.404/.424 in 34 games for Billings in the Pioneer League, showing strong plate discipline. I would probably give a similar player a B- or something nowadays. . .he was toolsy, fast and strong, but considered a bit raw although his plate discipline was looking decent already.

    Moved up to Class A Rockford in 1999, Dunn hit .307/.409/.476 with 11 homers, 46 walks, and 21 steals in 313 at-bats. His OPS and SEC marks were strong, and I gave him a Grade B+ in the '00 book. He was definitely more polished than expected with the bat, and his power/speed combination was highly intriguing.

    Dunn spent 2000 with Dayton in the Midwest League since the Reds were without an advanced A-ball affiliate. He hit .281/.438/.469 in 122 games, with 100 walks, 16 homers, and 24 steals. I left him a Grade B+ in the '01 book, noting that the grade was "if anything, too conservative" and saying that he looked like a Seven Skill player.

    Dunn began '01 in Double-A, hitting .343/.449/.664 in 39 games, with 12 homers. Promoted to Triple-A, he hit .329/.441/.676 with 20 homers in just 55 games. Moved to the majors, he hit .262/.371/.578 in 66 games, with 19 homers, emerging at age 21 as one of the premier young power hitters in the game.

    Since then, Dunn has been productive but at times frustrating for the Reds and their fans. He's lost his ability to steal bases he showed in the minors. His strikeout rate is very high, but so is his walk rate. His batting average is a career just .245, although his high walk rate keeps his OBP strong. And he's hit 40 or more homers three seasons in a row.

    In the minors, he was more of a complete player than he's been in the majors, as he's emphasized power development at the expense of other factors. It will be interesting to see how well he ages, and if he's able to take his home run production to the 50-homer level.

    Comparable players include Willie McCovey and Harmon Killebrew on the Hall of Fame track, Boog Powell and Bob Allison on the very good track, and Jim Gentile on the good-but-early-fadeout track.
    http://www.minorleagueball.com/2007/4/9/15259/89742
    Last edited by Honus Wagner Rules; 07-07-2012, 12:53 PM.
    Strikeouts are boring! Besides that, they're fascist. Throw some ground balls - it's more democratic.-Crash Davis

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    • #3
      This 2000 Adam Dunn baseball card says Dunn could be a future 30/30 guy!

      Adam-Dunn_2000.JPG
      Strikeouts are boring! Besides that, they're fascist. Throw some ground balls - it's more democratic.-Crash Davis

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      • #4
        They must have meant 30 home runs and 30 errors.

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        • #5
          It looks like Dunn was a very good athlete in his younger years. When Chris Simms chose to come to UT, Dunn was asked to move to tight end. I don't understand why Dunn isn't a better defensive player?
          Strikeouts are boring! Besides that, they're fascist. Throw some ground balls - it's more democratic.-Crash Davis

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          • #6
            Originally posted by Honus Wagner Rules View Post
            I don't understand why Dunn isn't a better defensive player?
            He gained about 90 pounds...

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Honus Wagner Rules View Post
              It looks like Dunn was a very good athlete in his younger years. When Chris Simms chose to come to UT, Dunn was asked to move to tight end. I don't understand why Dunn isn't a better defensive player?
              probably because he doesn't care enough.

              I could be wrong.
              "Batting stats and pitching stats do not indicate the quality of play, merely which part of that struggle is dominant at the moment."

              -Bill James

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              • #8
                Dunn actually looks a lot like Josh Hamilton on that baseball card.

                He was an option QB in high school that had an offer to go to Texas, so he definitely had athleticism in his younger days.

                Pretty obvious how much weight he's gained from that baseball card shot though. He looks MUCH thinner there.

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