Monday, June 11, 2012

Adam Dunn Doesn't Care About Batting Average

Adam Dunn is the poster child (poster man?) for the Three True Outcomes. The Three True Outcomes are a hit, walk and a home run since it takes defense out of the equation. Three True Outcomes is also the name of my Norwegian-metal garage band. My point is, though, Dunn doesn't mind if his .226 batting average qualifies for the bottom 25 in all of baseball. Dunn is actually rebounding nicely from his nightmare 2011 that saw him hit 11 home runs and an appalling .159/.292/.277 slash line. Jeff Mathis nods in approval.

Dunn has already mashed 20 homers and a .226/.369/.557 line this season which is much more in line with his career .243/.374/.505 numbers. ZiPS even has him projected to hit his regular 40 homers again. Batting average just isn't something high on his list of priorities...
"Honestly, I really don't look at batting average," Dunn said. "I know my job is to drive in runs and get on base and things of that nature. I don't care how I get on. I mean, whatever: Walk, hit, I don't care. But it's down at the bottom."
Dunn adds a negative value on defense so his work with the stick is why he gets paid. His atrocious 2011 had White Sox fans and many family members worried. While I'm amazed a team still lets Dunn own a glove, -1.3 UZR in 177.0 innings at 1B, -0.7 UZR in 2.0 innings in LF, suspect defense at DH, he is getting pay checks to hit for power and take pitches, which he leads the AL in with 4.49 pitches seen per plate appearance...
"Every year I was kind of up there in that," said Dunn of the pitches-viewed category. "It goes back to having my approach that is good and bad. Obviously, you want to get the starter out of there as quick as possible, so the more pitches you can see early in a game, the better."
And it's working for him. Dunn has lapped his 2011 fWAR (Fangraphs wins above replacement) but that was kinda easy considering he was worth -2.9 wins last year. Dunn is sitting at 1.5 fWAR this season.

Suck on that, batting average.

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