Chicago White sign Adam Dunn

In baseball’s big news of the day, the White Sox have signed slugger Adam Dunn to a 4/$56mil deal. Dunn will be paid $14mil per yer through his age 31-34 seasons.

Dunn is a fantastic hitter who has lost a lot of value over the years because of atrocious defense. But now it appears that Dunn has accepted the fact he is better suited at first base or DH, rather than the outfield. In the end, that could save him some value, although the DH penalty is still severe enough that he needs to hit no matter where he plays to have any significant value.

The contract will cover Dunn’s early 30s, which could have no impact or a negative impact. Players do get worse as they age, but age 31-34 isn’t so old anymore. He should still be able to mash the ball and the age won’t impact his defense if he is at DH or 1b. However, his body type usually does not age well. Again though, 31-34 isn’t that old anymore, so we might not see his decline just yet.

Dunn will be going into a homer haven, much like the one he played in during his Cincy years. That could possibly boost his numbers, at least at home. In the end though, analyzing Dunn is tricky. He has been a consistent, great hitter over the course of his career. He shows no sign of decline, except for age. But we do know that his body type does decline earlier than most and we don’t know how he will react if he becomes a hit only player in Chicago.

I started Dunn out at 3 WAR and decreased it by 0.5 each season as he gets older. In the end, using my estimates, the White Sox will overpay for Dunn by a total of $10mil, or $2.5mil per season. That’s a fair amount, but it’s not that bad. Moreover, it’s possible Dunn does continue to hit well and outperforms my predictions. I ran this with him producing total WAR’s of 10.5 and 11, each of which brought him closer to the $56mil salary he is being given. Moreover, Chicago has been dying for a power hitting lefty for sometime now. He is a great addition to the lineup, so he could be worth more than his projected $46mil value to Chicago. The White Sox figure to build teams that will contend each season, so Dunn should be worth more to them than to the Kansas City Royals, for example.

This may have been a slight reach for Chicago, but they get the player they want at a decent price and Dunn gets his money.

 

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