Pro baseball

Sox slugger Adam Dunn hopes to avoid any future 'Comeback' awards

2012-10-23T19:30:00Z 2012-10-24T04:15:07Z Sox slugger Adam Dunn hopes to avoid any future 'Comeback' awardsGeorge Castle Times Correspondent nwitimes.com
October 23, 2012 7:30 pm  • 

Adam Dunn still isn't thrilled with his production and hitting mechanics despite winning the American League Comeback of the Year Award Tuesday.

At almost the same time Ozzie Guillen, his first White Sox manager in 2011, was fired after one season with the Miami Marlins, Dunn spoke of work that still needs to be done to bring his offensive game up to par.

“It’s an award I hope I never win again,” he said in a teleconference. “I have a lot better base to work on during the off-season. I know what I need to fix. I didn’t have time during the season. We worked on it.

“When you’re in the middle of a playoff race, you don’t want to be tinkering too much with stuff. There’s some things I’m going to work on, and I want to get to where I know I can be.”

Dunn still struck out too much with 222 whiffs.

He did not hit the ball with enough power to left-center field, said general manager Kenny Williams.

After reaching 30 homers and 71 RBIs on July 24, Dunn slumped to the .200 level with a big decline in run production during the final two months.

Manager Robin Ventura, who stuck with Dunn in the No. 3 lineup slot, is still happy to have him.

“Adam is one of the best clubhouse guys I have been around, and it’s nice to see that his hard work paid off,” Ventura said. “He is deserving of the honor.”

Dunn said outfielder Alex Rios and pitcher Jake Peavy were more deserving of the award than him. Rios had one of the best all-around seasons of an AL outfielder.

“He carried us,” Dunn said. “He was the best player on our team. He played Gold Glove right field. He stole bases. He hit homers. He got the big hits. Without him, we would have been sunk.

"I know he went through a lot of stuff, too, last year. It’s good he was able to put it behind him.”

Dunn lockers next to Peavy, who is likely headed to free agency.

“What I do know is that he really, really, really wants to stay with us,” Dunn said. “As a teammate and a friend, we’d love to have him back.”

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