White Sox bench Adam Dunn
The struggling Dunn, who is 8-for-72 (.111) over his last 21 games and has struck out 80 times already, was out of the White Sox's starting lineup Tuesday against the Mariners. Paul Konerko was the designated hitter while Mark Teahen started at first base in the White Sox's 5-1 win.
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"A couple of days out the lineup, hopefully it will refresh his mind, get his stuff together and hopefully start over," manager Ozzie Guillen said before the game. "That's the reason I did it. Hopefully that works. We've been doing a lot of different things with him and nothing works. Hopefully a little break for a couple of days recharges his batteries."
Dunn is switching to a new league and batting out of the designated hitter spot for the first time in his career. He has a .176 overall batting average with five home runs and 23 RBIs. Those numbers projected out over a full season would leave him well below his career averages of a .250, 37 home runs and 93 RBIs.
He is in the first season of a four-year, $56 million deal so the White Sox aren't going to give up on him. They've even let him play more first base of late to no avail.
"I think this guy is a veteran player and he knows what he's doing," Guillen said. "As long as he doesn't panic. But it's no fun when you're not producing. It's no fun when you don't have the at-bats you want to have and help the ballclub to win. It can get tougher and tougher every day but you have to continue to believe in yourself and believe in your abilities and things will work out."
Chairman Jerry Reinsdorf expressed similar thoughts in an interview with FoxSports.com.
"What's past is past," Reinsdorf told the website. "I don't know that he's going to take his average all the way from what it is today to his normal average. But I would think, the rest of the year, he'll be what he normally is. It's just a matter of confidence."
ESPN.com's Jayson Stark spoke to a scout, who seemed to agree with Guillen and Reinsdorf that it isn't too late to make a significant impact.
"He's really feeling his way around a new league," the scout said. "He just can't get comfortable with all these new pitchers he's seeing. But there's nothing wrong with him. He's got the same presence. His mechanics at the plate look fine. I'd bet on him having a big second half, actually."
Doug Padilla covers the White Sox for ESPNChicago.com.