Roger Mooney covers the Tampa Bay Rays for The Tampa Tribune, TBO.com and News Channel 8. He has covered the Rays since their first season in 1998, including 11 years for the Bradenton Herald. Roger has also covered Florida, South Florida and Florida State football, the Bucs and the Lightning.
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Dunn the new name on list
Posted Jul 31, 2008 by Marc Lancaster
Updated Jul 31, 2008 at 10:03 AM
TORONTO—If you can take anything from the action of the past 24-48 hours, it’s that the Rays obviously aren’t content to just add a platoon bat in right field.
First all the Jason Bay talk, and now SI.com is reporting Tampa Bay has discussed Adam Dunn with the Reds. These are everyday guys and real impact players, not complementary pieces.
Dunn leads the majors with 32 homers, and SI.com’s Jon Heyman made a good point yesterday in noting that his production really tends to fly under the radar. In the last five years, Dunn has more homers than anyone in baseball (196, one more than A-Rod) and more walks than anyone in baseball (511, 10 more than Todd Helton).
For those who haven’t seen him much and are frustrated by B.J. Upton’s approach at the plate, you might not be a fan. He takes even more pitches, including plenty of called third strikes. But when he runs into one, there aren’t many that can send the ball farther.
His defense in left field never has been a strength, but by all accounts it has improved this season. The idea of playing him in right makes me a bit twitchy, but that has been the weakest link in the Rays’ defense all season anyway and the other spots are pretty solid.
Anyway, I think he’d be a nice fit with the Rays in a lot of respects, but who knows. And speaking of the Reds, his name hasn’t been mentioned in connection with the Rays, but David Weathers might not be a bad addition. He’s a setup guy but has closing experience and would fit the mold of the current Rays bullpen. Just throwing it out there…
It’s going to be a long day filled with a lot of hot air, and it could end with Dunn headed to Tampa Bay, or Jason Bay, or someone nobody has mentioned yet. No one had those Pudge to the Yankees or Griffey to the White Sox deals before they happened.