When Adam Dunn saw his batting average fall to .220 on Tuesday night, he might have wondered what he had to do to turn things around.
Little did he know that Chicago White Sox manager Robin Ventura had something different in mind than extra batting practice or an unscheduled video session.
In the top of the ninth inning before a home crowd of 21,827, Ventura had the former high school fireballer take the mound at U.S. Cellular Field with the White Sox trailing Texas 15-0.
Dunn, a six-foot-six first baseman/designated hitter, suddenly was staring down Texas’ six-foot, 200-pound shortstop Elvis Andrus while awaiting the sign from catcher Adrian Nieto.
Dunn threw an 81-mile-per-hour first pitch to Andrus, who grounded out to second base.
With the crowd cheering every pitch, Dunn proceeded to allow a single to Canadian Jim Adduci and walked Adrian Beltre, who flashed a big smile after taking a first-pitch ball from Dunn. Later in the inning, Adam Rosales sandwiched a single between a J.P. Arencibia pop out and Rougned Odor flyout.
Dunn’s final pitching line read one inning, two hits, one run (earned), one walk, 12 strikes and 22 pitches.
Adam Dunn’s pitches have some good movement haha— Brian (@URClassless) August 6, 2014
@SportsCenter do I get fantasy points for that?— Alex Blankman (@alexblankman1) August 6, 2014
“Hopefully it will send guys home with something to laugh about because the job I did to start the game and the tone I set didn’t really have us in the direction of giving us anything to laugh about,” dejected White Sox lefty and Tuesday loser John Danks said of Dunn’s appearance in the 16-0 debacle.
Most career HR of anyone to pitch in MLB: 714 Babe Ruth 534 Jimmie Foxx 521 Ted Williams 475 Stan Musial 462 Jose Canseco 457 Adam Dunn— Christopher Kamka (@ckamka) August 6, 2014
Danks’s earned-run average soared to 4.93, but it’s still lower than that of Dunn.
Adam Dunn's ERA, at 9.00, is better than Sox pitching staff in the previous 3 games, standing at 11.25.— R.A. Roth (@fantagor) August 6, 2014
Dunn, who rarely turns away interview requests, bolted quickly after the game.