Adam Dunn is not psychic. Hes not a prophet or a soothsayer. Bring up the word clairvoyant and he might think youre talking about a woman named Claire Voyant.
The man is a baseball player. The celestial, mystical world is not exactly in his wheelhouse.
But there was the 285-pound slugger on June 1, 2011, photographed at Fenway Park, fastening his White Sox helmet onto the head of Red Sox third baseman Kevin Youkilis, an image that today looks as if Dunn was seeing into the future, predicting a day when Youkilis would actually change allegiances, going from Red Sox to White.
Was Dunn given a message from the heavens? Had a spiritual being entered his subconscious mind to inform him that Youkilis would be on his way to Chicago in one of the most lopsided trades in franchise history?
No, I was checking to see if my helmet could actually fit on his head.
I have a tiny head. My helmet is like a 7 or 7 18. He wears like an 8. Im not kidding, Dunn said by phone Wednesday from Boston. Looking at the photo now, it certainly appears to have a different meaning.
It sure does, especially for the White Sox who have immediately reaped the benefits of the Youkilis trade. Theyve gone 12-6 in his first 18 games, with Youkilis batting .319 with four home runs and 18 RBIs. In 42 games with the Red Sox, he had four home runs and 14 RBIs.
His mere presence has also had an affect on other hitters in the lineup, specifically Dunn, who bats right behind him in the order.
The good thing is Im going to have at least four or five pitches to get ready for that at-bat. Hes going to see a lot of pitches, Dunn said. On any given day in that first inning, we could see 30 pitches between myself, Kevin, and Alejandro De Aza before Paulie Konerko steps to the plate. He works the count and has great at-bats.
The friendship between Dunn and Youkilis goes back to their days in Cincinnati, when Adam starred for the Reds and Kevin played at the University of Cincinnati.
I was young. He was young. We met up at a lot of different places. We struck up a friendship there and kept it going, said Dunn, whose personality definitely vibes with the Sox third baseman.
Hes just a goofer. He has a lot of fun. Believe it or not, he doesnt take things too seriously. I know hes a real intense guy on the field. Off the field, hes laid back and likes to have fun, Dunn explained.
Maybe the two of them can make a bet: Who will steal more bases this season? After his surprising theft last night, Dunn currently leads 1-0.
I havent ran in a few years. I used to sneak a few in here and there, Dunn said. If theyre going to give it to me, Im going to take it in the second half for sure.
I asked Adam to describe his speed.
I wouldnt put it at the speed of light, but I wouldnt put it as sloth-like, either.
So something in the middle?
I dont want to say it because Paul Konerko is standing right here. I dont want to hurt his feelings. Im going to say average.
Adding Youkilis to the team? Theres been nothing average about that. And if Adam happens to see Zack Greinke, Ryan Dempster or a veteran reliever with a low ERA in the next two weeks, he has the green light to test their head size as well.
Because Youkilis has fit right in.