Think back to July 2008 and you'll remember the tirade that seemingly came out of nowhere from J.P. Ricciardi when he lambasted the then Cincinnati Reds slugger on Jays Talk. It was one of the strangest things I have ever heard come out of the mouth of anyone in baseball, let alone a General Manager of a professional baseball team.
Relive the madness and click on the audio below:
J.P. Ricciardi’s media blunder all but eliminated any chance whatsoever that Adam Dunn would ever play for the Toronto Blue Jays.
With Ricciardi gone, Alex Anthopolous can swoop in and be the young, hip General Manager and reassure Dunn that he’s nothing like Ricciardi.
It's time for the Blue Jays to extend and olive branch to Adam Dunn and get back on his good side. It's time for the Blue Jays to do what they should have two years ago—either trade to get Adam Dunn or sign him as a free agent next winter.
Unlike the soon to be departed Roy Halladay, Adam Dunn isn’t in it for a championship—he wants the money. He played in Cincinnati for seven and a half seasons while they never once had a record above .500. Now he’s with the worst team in baseball, so it’s clear that having a chance at winning is at the bottom of his priority list.
The Blue Jays can easily clear up enough space to pay Dunn $10 million dollars a year, and it would be more than worth it. Adam Dunn is the closest thing there is to a guaranteed 40 HR/100 RBI hitter, and would provide protection for Adam Lind in the three slot.
Like most typical sluggers, his batting average is something left to be desired and he averages around 180 strikeouts per season. Despite all that, Dunn still has a decent career OBP at .383.
There is one drawback though—the Blue Jays cannot and should not put him in the outfield or first base. He is an on-field liability, and according the FanGraphs has the worst UZR rating in baseball over the past three years. Simply put, at this point in his career, it’s DH or bust for Adam Dunn.
Maybe this offseason isn’t the right time to trade for Adam Dunn, but he should definitely be on the Blue Jays radar next winter. He won't be coming to Toronto to win a championship at first, but if all the pieces fall into place, a World series ring might be a pleasant side effect.