Most of what you read about impending free agent Adam Dunn from the Washington Nationals’ side is that the team is eager to re-sign the hulking slugger, but might not have the cash to do so. Rarely do you see things like this:

As far as [re-signing] Dunn goes, I don’t see it happening before the postseason comes to an end. Dunn will likely file for free agency then.

There is no question that Dunn is a better hitter than I thought. But what is overlooked here is his defense, which is below average. In my opinion, the Nationals can’t afford another year of having a below-average first baseman. nationals.com.



“Can’t afford” his contractual demands is one thing. “Can’t afford” the liability defensively at first base is another, and it should have you wondering whether the Cubs can “afford” Dunn. Bruce Levine has suggested that Dunn is a “high priority” for the Chicago Cubs this winter, but if the Nationals are ready to let him go because his defense is so bad, should the Cubs really be considering plunking down three-years’ worth of serious money?

I’m starting to wonder whether the Cubs would be better off signing a guy like Adam LaRoche or Lyle Overbay for a fraction of the cost of Dunn, and using their money elsewhere. Is the difference in Dunn’s bat (above those guys) worth the difference in his glove (below those guys)? These are the tough questions that Jim Hendry will have to answer in what figures to be a make or break season for the Cubs’ general manager.




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