GLENDALE, Ariz. - Adam Dunn appreciates Robin Ventura playing him at first base in Cactus League games.
Not that Dunn wants more playing time at Paul Konerko's position. It's just that being a designated hitter in the spring isn't the same as being a DH during the season.
"Yeah, it's boring,'' Dunn said. "Robin has been awesome about that. I've only DH'd a couple times here. DH-ing is really hard down here.''
During the regular season, players have access to the clubhouse, exercise bikes and whatever else they can use to pass time and stay loose. There's no such access on Cactus League fields.
Except for possibly a new drill or two, Dunn said he doesn't plan to alter his DH routine much during the regular season. He batted .159 for the Sox in 2011, his first season as a DH - a role that takes some getting used to. But his hitting problems weren't related to his comfort level, Dunn said, so he sees no need to change.
Among the team leaders in games started, Dunn was not in the lineup for the Sox game against the A's at Camelback Ranch on Monday.
"It's one of those to get guys at-bats,'' Ventura said. "He's been swinging it great, and we've been able to get them at first base and DH, moving him around. Just getting him work and at-bats, and that's just one way to get him at-bats and get him active. Get him on the field and get him running around. Even in spring training, DH is boring. So get him out there and get him comfortable. If we have to get Paulie a day off during the season, we can do that.''
A below average first baseman defensively, Dunn is fine with playing first base but doesn't care either way.
"I have no idea [about Ventura's planned workload for Dunn at first] but if he does that's cool. If he doesn't, whatever. I don't care. I know what I signed up for [to DH] and I'll do whatever.''