Tom Verducci of SI.com shares the scoop …
The San Francisco Giants and Oakland Athletics are among teams interested in acquiring Chicago White Sox slugger Adam Dunn before the Monday deadline for postseason eligibility, two sources told SI.com. A potential trade may be Dunn’s final chance to experience postseason baseball.
ESPN’s Buster Olney adds the Dodgers to the mix.
Dunn has a no-trade clause, but he’s appeared in more career regular-season games without reaching the playoffs than any active major league player and the belief is that he would accept a deal to a contending team. The veteran slugger will turn 35 years old this winter and is in the final year of a four-year, $56 million contract with the White Sox. He has strongly hinted that he might retire once that deal is done.
Dunn is batting .220/.340/.433 with 20 home runs and 54 RBI in 106 games this season for Chicago.
UPDATE, 10:03 a.m. ET: A deal might be coming together quickly …
UPDATE, 10:05 a.m. ET: Olney now says the Giants are out. It sounds like Dunn is headed to Oakland.
UPDATE, 11:49 a.m. ET: Dunn has been traded to the A’s for minor league reliever Nolan Sanburn.
The Rays started Sergio Romo on back-to-back days and if that sounds weird to you, you’re not alone. Romo, of course, was the star closer for the Giants for a while, helping them win the World Series in 2012 and ’14. He’s been a full-time reliever dating back to 2006, when he was at Single-A.
In an effort to prevent lefty Ryan Yarbrough from facing the righty-heavy top of the Angels’ lineup (Zack Cozart, Mike Trout, Justin Upton), Romo started Saturday’s game, pitching the first inning before giving way to Yarbrough in the second. Romo struck out the side, in fact. The Rays went on to win 5-3.
The Rays did it again on Sunday afternoon, starting Romo. This time, he got four outs before giving way to Matt Andriese. Romo walked two without giving up a hit while striking out three. The Angels managed to win 5-2 however.
Despite Sunday’s win, Cozart wasn’t a happy camper with the way the Rays used Romo. Via Fabian Ardaya of The Athletic, Cozart said, “It was weird … It’s bad for baseball, in my opinion … It’s spring training. That’s the best way to explain it.”
It’s difficult to see merit in Cozart’s argument. It’s not like the Rays were making excessive amounts of pitching changes; they used five on Saturday and four on Sunday. The games lasted three hours and three hours, 15 minutes, respectively. The average game time is exactly three hours so far this season. I’m having trouble wondering how else Cozart might mean the strategy is bad for baseball.
It seems like the real issue is that Cozart is afraid of the sport changing around him. The Rays, like most small market teams, have to find their edges in slight ways. The Rays aren’t doing this blindly; the strategy makes sense based on their opponents’ starting lineup. The idea of valuing on-base percentage was scoffed at. Shifting was scoffed at and now every team employs them to some degree. Who knows if starting a reliever for the first three or four outs will become a trend, but it’s shortsighted to write it off at first glance.