Therefore, outfield is one of two places where I would like to see the team make a run at a free agent (starting pitching is the other). There are a lot of interesting names here, and some real sleepers.
I'm going to probably shock everyone and say I think Adam Dunn--Jim Bowden Reds-reunion punch-line--would make a lot of sense for us. First, he's a beast. Other than Manny, he's the best run-producer available. Some people don't like his strikeouts, but they don't understand how runs are scored in baseball. He has a .380 OBP and slugs with he best of them. Second, he could cover first base in a pinch. He played almost as much 1B for the D'Backs as he did outfield, and although again we have an awful lot invested in IF defense, Dunn wasn't really any worse at first than in the outfield (incidentally not every statistical measure hates him defensively; Clay Davenport's 'runs above average' stat has him really right around average the last two seasons). Third, I think it would only take a 2-3 year contract to get him, so we don't have to marry the late declining years of the guy like you would with most blockbuster free agents. Fourth, based on reports around the trade deadline, there aren't as many teams interested as I would have thought, including none of the really big-payroll teams. And finally, he'll only be 29 next year.And I wrote that before he was not offered arb and became available without costing us a draft pick.
One glitch I have to flag however, is that in the interim we traded for this other guy, Josh Willingham. If this is a prelude to trading Lastings Milledge or Nick Johnson, I'll be disappointed. I have to think more about what I think they should do about this glut of outfielders, but for now I know I don't want either Nick or Lastings gone. And I'm assuming Dukes is untouchable.