PHOENIX – The Diamondbacks added a power bat to the middle of their order on Monday by acquiring Adam Dunn from the Cincinnati Reds in exchange for three minor-league players.
Dunn, who was tied for the major league lead with 32 home runs, should provide additional sock to an offense that has struggled to score runs for most of the season.
“Obviously we’ve been looking for more offense,” general manager Josh Byrnes said at a news conference Monday afternoon. “Adam is one of the premier hitters against right-handed pitching in all of baseball. Just from the offensive side of things he will give us a lift.”
Dunn is set to become a free agent at the end of the season. He leaves the last-place Reds (52-67), who open a series in Pittsburgh on Tuesday.
“I’m very excited about the opportunity to actually play on a first-place team in August,” Dunn said on a conference call.
Dunn could amount to a seven-week rental for the Diamondbacks, and, should he depart as a free agent, the Diamondbacks would receive two premium draft picks in compensation.
Where Dunn fits in the lineup long-term was a question mostly left unanswered by manager Bob Melvin.
Melvin said Dunn would be his right fielder and bat cleanup Tuesday in Denver, where the Diamondbacks open a three-game series against the Rockies, but would not commit to much beyond that.
Class-A right-hander Dallas Buck was announced as part of the trade and the other two players have yet to be named but are on the Diamondbacks’ 40-man roster and in their farm system. The Reds and Diamondbacks are believed to be splitting what remains of Dunn’s $13 million salary.
The Diamondbacks rank 10th in the league in on-base and slugging and Dunn will provide an offensive boost despite his .233 average. He has a .376 on-base and a .528 slugging. The left-handed hitter has a .954 on-base-plus-slugging against right-handed pitching. He has hit at least 40 homers in the previous four seasons.
Arizona (Johnson 9-8) at Colorado (Jimenez 8-10), 6:05 p.m. Tuesday. TV: FSNA. Radio: 1490 AM