On August 16th, Dan Hayes of the CSNCicago.com reported Adam Dunn has been taking measures to beat the extreme shift teams are placing against him. Dunn went from hitting .156/.256/.377 before the adjustment to .309/.416/.549 after the adjustment. And teams have noticed. From the article:
The Minnesota Twins, whom the White Sox beat 5-2 at Target Field on Friday, are the fourth straight team to have played Dunn with a straight up defense. Though both of Dunn's hits on Friday, including his 28th home run, a solo shot, went to the right side, it's clear the slugger has a more balanced approach at the plate.
The article wasn't just hidden away from the public's view. Hardball Talk, where I found out about the article, wrote about it. Rob Neyer, here at SBN's Baseball Nation, picked it up. It was no secret, or it seemed.
So did the Royals get the memo? Ahh.....nope. Here is the positioning on Adam Dunn's single last night:
Adam Dunn was down 1-2 with a runner on 2nd when he stroked a single. It should have been no surprise to the Royals what Adam was going to try to do in the situation. Let's all go back to the article.
"Sometimes I'll get up there with a runner on second and I look and there's a huge hole almost at shortstop and you're basically giving yourself up, but you're really not," Dunn said. "If you hit the ball over there, it's a run. I'll literally get jammed as bad as I can get jammed and it's a slow roller out there that barely reaches the outfield grass and yet it gets the job done."
It is kind of like he told the Royals what he was going to do and the Royals didn't care and/or know.
The ball got through the left side, scored the runner from second, and helped fuel a 5-run inning.
I am just working myself writing this and I probably shouldn't care about one single from the Big Donkey, but I do. The Royals just seem light years behind other teams and just never have the ability to make adjustments quick enough to keep up.