After a month of speculation and negotiations, Adam Dunn is staying right where he was at the beginning of July: as a member of the Nationals.
The Nationals did not trade the first baseman by the 4 p.m. deadline, keeping Dunn in Washington after fielding offers from a number of teams for Dunn, who will be a free agent after the season.
"I know (general manager) Mike (Rizzo)'s been very busy," manager Jim Riggleman said. "I think all along, we felt that it was unlikely that something like that would happen. I guess if Mike got overwhelmed, I would've gotten a call by now and he would've said we're going to do something. I think everybody's happy with the way it's turned out. I know Mike is very happy with what Adam does for us. He would've had to have been very overwhelmed with something to get him to move a guy like Adam Dunn, and obviously that didn't happen."
Rizzo told reporters this afternoon that he didn't get a deal that would've brought back equal production for Adam Dunn. That's an important point to make - Rizzo didn't say he wanted a deal that would bring fair value for Dunn. He said he didn't want to do a "quantity deal," flipping Dunn for a bunch of prospects that would help the team later.
"To trade Adam Dunn would give us players in return that will - multiple players that were as good or better than Adam Dunn, the impact or more than Adam Dunn, we would have made the deal," Rizzo said. "We certainly weren't going to take a step backwards or do a multi-player, a quantity deal for Adam Dunn. This is a prototypical clean-up hitter in the lineup that hits 40 home runs and drives in 100 runs and is a great clubhouse presence. That means a lot to us and to our fan base."
Now, the Nationals move on to trying to sign Dunn to an extension. Rizzo said the Nationals would continue to talk with Dunn's agent, Greg Genske, about a deal. The philosophy squares with what the team has done all along; a source said earlier this year that the Nationals were comfortable with waiting until late in the season, or even after the year, to sign Dunn.
"Adam Dunn is a big part of our ball club," Rizzo said. "We've shown that by not trading him for lesser value."
Rizzo also said the Nationals got a lot of inquiries on Josh Willingham, and had some serious conversations with teams about the outfielder, but nothing that made them want to part with Willingham, either.
More in a while.