Adam Dunn is one of the most polarizing players in fantasy baseball, which is not to say that he is one of the great players, but I don’t think there is anyone out there who can have so much value in one league and then be almost worthless in another. Let me explain.
If we were to lay out the prototypical Dunn season we would have 80-85 R, 40 HR, 95-100 RBI and a low .200′s BA. We’ve talked in the past how batting average isn’t worth worrying about in head-to-head leagues and you can work around it in roto leagues. In those leagues Dunn will be a bargain because plenty of owners are scared off by his horrible average. However, in points leagues where you are penalized for strikeouts Dunn loses so much value that I would probably stay away from him altogether.
Just for perspective, last year Dunn struck out a ridiculous 222 times! Luckily for those in points leagues, he also walked a ridiculous amount (108 BB). But even by getting almost half of those points back his remaining -114 points wipe out 28 of his homers.
At a Glance:
Strengths: HR, RBI, BB, SLG, OPS
Neutral: R, OBP
Weaknesses: SB, K, BA
Best-case scenario: Josh Willingham (MIN) with more power
Likely scenario: Chris Davis (BAL), Mark Reynolds (CLE), Ryan Howard (PHI)
Worst-case scenario: Carlos Pena (HOU)
Adam Dunn 2013 Fantasy Projection
When drafting Dunn it’s best to put his 2011 season out of the picture because it was an aberration from what has otherwise been a remarkably consistent career. At 33, Dunn’s best days are behind him but he can still be very valuable, especially in OBP leagues.
He is very patient at the plate (career 16.2 BB%) and while he has a reputation to strike out, he’s not a very free swinger (41.2 Swing% vs. 46.0% league average). I would actually go as far to say that if Dunn swung the bat more he would probably hit closer to .250 because he would give the ball more of a chance to find the grass rather than watching it zoom by into the catcher’s mitt.
Nonetheless, there are no surprises when it comes to drafting Dunn and his unique set of skills and with 2011 still in recent memory you can probably still get him at a nice value.