Waiting for the Big Breeze to Shift | Bleader

Friday, May 6, 2011

Waiting for the Big Breeze to Shift

Posted By on 05.06.11 at 08:22 AM

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It’s an ill wind that blows no good—and right now, no one’s iller than the Big Breeze, but not in the positive hip-hop sense. In last week's Adam Dunn K Watch, we noted he was hitting .162. The only good thing about a batting average that low is there’s nowhere to go but up. Dunn managed to lower it this week to .153.

It’s not time to start panicking, White Sox fans. That time was a week ago. The Sox are in last place, 11 games behind the Indians. They have the worst record in baseball, 11-21. They’ve lost 17 of their last 21. They’re off to their worst start in 33 years. They’re so bad that Mayor Daley offered his season tickets to Rahm Emanuel as a hallwarming gift, but Rahm told him no fucking thanks.

It would be unfair to blame the Big Breeze for all this, but 90 percent seems reasonable. Winning and losing are contagious. Might Dunn’s K-Virus also be communicable? Juan Pierre is striking out at stealing (tossed out nine times already), Alexei Ramirez is fanning on fielding (six errors), John Danks has whiffed at winning (0-5). With Dunn in the lineup the Sox are 7-18; without him, they’re 4-3. No one’s wishing him another appendicitis attack, but could he maybe turn an ankle on the way back to the dugout?

A month ago we noted that Dunn would drive Sox fans nuts this season—that they’d be cheering him one moment and cussing him the next. So far we’re half right. Dunn is striking out 37.5 percent of the time, a phenomenal rate, highest in the majors. At that pace the Big Breeze will blow away Dave Nicholson’s Sox season K record of 175.

An ESPN fantasy baseball blogger wrote Wednesday that Dunn is still showing some power potential, based on the number of fly balls and liners he’s hit when he’s actually connected—and so he may yet come around. “If you can buy low on Dunn, you should,” the blogger advised his fantasy audience. A tip that, for Kenny Williams, is a day late and $56 million short.

So far: 25 games, 85 ABs, 33 Ks.

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