When I was little, my kindergarten teacher told me that I should always be on the lookout for my “special talent”. I was told that everyone, absolutely every person in the world has a special talent, some just have to search for it more than others. Well, after playing in 67 games, it appears that Adam Dunn has found his special talent.
He is very good at striking out. A lot.
Today, after striking out four times (let’s repeat that again, FOUR TIMES) against the Nationals, Dunn became the fastest in the American League to 100 strikeouts. The next guy behind him is the Tigers’ Austin Jackson, who has struck out 91 times so far. However, Jackson has had 306 at-bats this season, meaning that he is K’d roughly about 30% of the time. The esteemed Mr. Dunn, on the other hand, has only been to the plate 231 times thus far. That means that 43% of the time that Dunn goes to bat, he adds yet another strikeout to the list.
Forty. Three. Percent. Of. The. Time. I’m not sure I can overstate that. If I was Dunn, I’d be making this face too. In fact, I am, right now as I read those hideous stats.
Not even the special talent line can save you this time, Adam.
Finally. Tomorrow afternoon, I will come home from school and watch the White Sox spring training opener against the Dodgers on MLB Network. I am so excited. I realize that spring training essentially meaningless, but after such a long and dreary winter, I can’t wait to see my boys. Before every game, White Sox VP Scott Reifert tweets the game’s lineup. When I saw “Lineup for tomorrow’s Cactus League #WhiteSox opener: JP7, Beck4, Rios8, Dunndh, PK3, Q9, AJ2, Ram6, Morel5. Play Ball!” appear on my Twitter feed, I grinned. I forgot the little things that I miss when there is no baseball.
Among other exciting storylines in tomorrow’s game is the debut of new acquisition Adam Dunn, who will be hitting third in the lineup (that tweet above is inaccurate. It was posted very early, so I guess some tinkering was done after the fact). It’s very exciting that we now have a true DH in the lineup, and even though it’s very early, it’d be nice if Dunn could make a good first impression. I don’t want to be making this face by the bottom of the ninth.
Poking around the depth chart, a couple of interesting things catch my eye. One is that Brent Lillibridge is apparently Utilityman Supreme. The depth chart has his name under second base, shortstop, left field, center field, and right field. That’s quite a list. Whether or not he actually makes the 25-man roster remains to be seen. After all, a .194 career batting average isn’t desirable. But it would be nice to have someone to call on for defensive purposes when in a pinch.
Another thing I see on the depth chart is that Brent Morel is currently listed ahead of Mark Teahen in the third base slot. According to an article on MLB.com, the two are currently in a “friendly battle” for the starting spot. We may be a ways off from decision time, but just the notion of Mark Teahen sitting on the bench makes me jump up and down inside. Lindy’s Baseball Magazine has these glowing words to say about him:
- Continues to leak bat speed and power
- Substandard 3B
- Has lost range to both sides and struggles throwing.
They ultimately give him one star, which according to their key means he is a bench player. Doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure that one out. Hopefully with Morel at the hot corner, I won’t have to do this every time a ball is hit to third.
(I just realized that in previous entries, I have consistently referred to Brent Morel as “Brett”. It’s even in my tag cloud. Whoops.)
Finally, the long and torturous offseason is about to come to an end. We’re in the home stretch now: 19 days until White Sox pitchers and catchers report to Camelback Ranch. In honor of this milestone, here are the top 19 reasons I can’t wait for spring training:
19) I live in Connecticut, where there is nearly 5 feet of snow on the ground and it is cold and gray outside. I would like hear news from a place where it is warm and sunny and, best of all, there is not a spot of snow on the ground.
18) I’m curious to see if Gordon Beckham plans on bringing back this stylin’ hairdo:
17) It’s officially time for the White Sox and Don Cooper to come face-to-face and either work it out or part their separate ways. It’s clear Don Cooper wishes he was with the Yankees right now, and it’s also clear that the front office is being petty towards him by communicating with him only via text-message. Both sides need to meet, and that will happen in Arizona.
16) Hoping Mark Buehrle will roll up the ball park in his killing-the-ozone-one-mile-at-a-time truck.
15) Is this the year Jordan Danks shows us something special and earns a roster spot? Always hoping to see the younger Danks roaming the Cell’s outfield…maybe my wish will come true this year.
14) I get to see Chris Sale throw again, and be reminded why he is our future ace.
13) Our big free-agent signing, Adam Dunn, is at long last unveiled, ready to show us that we finally have a stable, powerful, and productive DH.
12) The post-Bobby Jenks era in the bullpen will commence, and the race for the closer spot will begin. Will favorite Matt Thornton emerge with the role? Maybe hot-shot Chris Sale? Or even a dark horse, like Jesse Crain? The competition should be great to watch.
11) It’s always fun to see what color AJ Pierzynski’s hair currently is.
10) Can Jake Peavy return to form after his unprecedented shoulder surgery? That question will finally be answered for curious fans like myself.
9) I’m waiting waiting waiting for Mark Teahen to be removed from the hot corner, and will relish the moment when prospect Brett Morel earns the spot.
8) This year will be the year when Carlos Quentin revisits the MVP-caliber self he was in ’08. I just know it. The road back starts NOW.
7) Finally, I can start watching ESPN again. I don’t mind football, but I want some baseball news sprinkled in there. Otherwise, I start doing homework and actually become productive. And that simply cannot do.
6) I can also begin wearing my ChiSox apparel once again in places other than gym class. I don’t like wearing my Mark Buehrle shirt if I know there’s no game it will bring him luck in.
5) Spring training always coincides with the beginning of second semester. I’m halfway through the school year. Baseball reminds me that I’m almost there, that summer will come soon enough.
4) With the dawn of each new season comes hope. Hope that the ChiSox will not disappoint me this time. We will go 162-0 and win the World Series and watch those Twinkies cry themselves to sleep at night in last place. At least, that’s what I can hope for.
3) As teams take shape, I can make predictions for the season…and maybe this year, one will actually be right.
2) We all know that spring training will not end without a word from Oney Guillen and his Twitter feed. He’s not done yet. There’s always someone to bash.
1) And of course, where there’s Oney’s mouth, there’s the man who gave him that voice in the first place.