First-year manager Robin Ventura has made it a point to do whatever he can to protect
certain players from themselves, and that started in the spring with Jake Peavy, and
making sure the often injured pitcher was brought along slowly, no matter what Peavy told
That also included Adam Dunn, and was on further display in Tuesday's 2-0 loss to
Oakland. Yes, Dunn struck out to end the game against the Athletics, but did so as a
pinch-hitter, brought off the bench in the ninth.
The reason Dunn was sitting? Ventura doesn't want the left-handed hitter to be exposed
by left-handed pitchers like he was last season, and with Oakland starter Tommy Milone on
the hill, it meant Dunn was on the bench until late in the game.
"Obviously I'm doing something against them that's not working," Dunn said. "I feel
fine in the box, but when I do get a pitch to hit, I miss it. Probably pulling off a
little bit against the lefty."
"A little bit," might be an understatement, considering Dunn was 1-for-18 against
southpaws entering the night. Add to the fact that Dunn hadn't seen the change-up/fastball
lefty in Milone, and Ventura made sure to keep the veteran as far away from the pitcher as
What the Sox don't want to see is a repeat performance from Dunn last season, where he
seemed to lose his confidence and it snowballed.
Dunn was batting .333 with four home runs and 11 RBI against right-handed pitchers
before being fanned by Grant Balfour. He had just three RBI against lefties but 10
What that meant for the Sox lineup was Paul Konerko getting a bit of a breather by
getting the nod in Dunn's DH spot, while Brent Lillibridge started at first base and hit
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