Diamondbacks Acquire Top Slugger Adam Dunn

The Arizona Diamondbacks acquired outfielder Adam Dunn from the Reds today in exchange for minor league pitcher Dallas Buck and two players to be named later.

We told you that a move was imminent.  The Arizona Diamondbacks claimed Adam Dunn on waivers earlier this month and finalized a four-player trade with the Cincinnati Reds on Monday.  Dunn is tied with ex-Diamondback Carlos Quentin for the major league lead with 32 homers, batting .233/.373/.528 this season with 74 RBI.  He was the center of a controversy with J.P. Ricciardi in June when the Toronto general manager accused the giant slugger of having no passion for the game of baseball on a sports radio broadcast.

Dunn will be eligible for free agency after making $13 million this year and figures to boost an anemic Arizona offense.  Injuries to Eric Byrnes, Justin Upton, Chris Snyder, and most recently, Orlando Hudson have contributed to the Diamondbacks ranking 20th in the majors in runs scored and 26th in batting average.  Away from hitter-friendly Chase Field, they rank 27th in runs scored on the road and dead last in batting average among major league clubs.

Adam Dunn has averaged the longest distance per home run in the majors, so should be able to clear any ballpark in which the Diamondbacks play.  His career numbers in the cavernous home of the San Diego Padres - Petco Park, where the D-backs play three more games this year - are mighty impressive.  He has homered seven times in 70 career plate appearances there, good for averages of .310/.429/.724.  While the numbers Dunn will put up at Chase are going to pop some eyes, his ability to boost the Diamondbacks' 27-32 road record could be the key to this young team making the playoffs.

The Diamondbacks selected Dallas Buck in the third round of the 2006 First-Year Player Draft, and he underwent Tommy John surgery last year. It was known when he was drafted that he had a torn ligament in his throwing elbow, but Buck elected to try strengthening that ligament through rehab rather than undergo surgery immediately.

As a result, his progress has been set back considerably.  Buck returned to action a couple of months ago and went 1-4 with a 3.94 ERA in nine games for Low-A South Bend. The sinkerballer got promoted to Hi-A Visalia earlier this month and lost in his only start there.  He had gone 4-4 with a 3.41 ERA at that same Hi-A level last year in the 16 starts that he made before finally going under the knife.

Send questions or comments for Keith Glab to future_backs@yahoo.com

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