Since he’s no longer running out to be part of the mob, Robin Ventura had a unique perspective on Adam Dunn’s game-winning home run.
Dunn’s 431-foot blast in the bottom of the ninth on Friday night, a two-run shot, lifted the White Sox to a stunning 6-5 victory over the New York Yankees at U.S. Cellular Field. It was the 10th walk-off homer of Dunn’s career and the third the White Sox have hit this season, which leads the majors. Alexei Ramirez and Jose Abreu hit the team’s other game-winning home runs.
But Dunn’s was unlike any the White Sox manager has seen so far this season as he towered over his teammates when he arrived at the plate.
“That looked a little more like “Gulliver’s Travels,” Ventura said. “It didn’t look like they could really get to him, like they can’t hurt him, which is a good thing.
You eventually get to congratulate, it’s for them to go out there and celebrate.”
Dunn’s 10 walk-offs are tied with Albert Pujols and Jason Giambi for the second most among active players. He also became the first White Sox player since A.J. Pierzynski on Sept. 8, 2006 to hit a game-winner on a 0-2 pitch.
Dunn has a .248/.399/.481 with eight homers and 21 RBIs in 168 plate appearances this season. It was his second game-winner in the past eight days, including a go-ahead three-run shot at Houston on May 15. He’s on pace to walk 107 times and strike out 149.
“He’s taking his walks, he’s putting the ball in play, he’s still hitting homers, he’s hitting balls hard, with the bases loaded hitting the ball deep to center, he’s consistently done that,” Ventura said. “That’s been a big deal for us, him actually filling in for Jose and the way he’s swinging the bat. There was some protection there for Jose early in the year because of the way he’s swinging the bat.”