That good news comes with an asterisk, I suppose – it’s good news if you actually want the Cubs to sign Adam Dunn.
Adam Dunn has been designated a Type A free agent by the Elias Sports Bureau (just barely), which means that, should a team other than the Nationals sign him in free agency, that team has to give up a first rounder to do so.
Why is this good news for the Cubs? Teams with the top 15 picks in the draft (one of which is the Cubs) have their first round pick protected – instead, they give up their second rounder to sign a Type A free agent. That means that Adam Dunn comes more cheaply to the Cubs than he would to a team with a bottom 15 pick (i.e., the 15 best teams in baseball in 2010, which coincidently, on the balance, tend to be the teams with the most money to spend, and the most likely to compete for a guy like Dunn’s services). It also means that the market for Dunn will be slightly tempered – some teams will be reluctant to spend as much money on Dunn, knowing that it’ll cost them a first rounder.
So how much does this actually affect the Dunn bottom line? Perhaps not much – maybe a million or two. But it does boost the likelihood that the Cubs will land Dunn, if they want him, by a good bit.