Dunn hits third, plays first in finale

Dunn hits third, plays first in finale

Dunn hits third, plays first in finale
DENVER -- White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen started Adam Dunn at first base in Thursday's series finale against the Rockies, and he also used the game as an opportunity to rest several of his everyday players.

First baseman Paul Konerko, third baseman Brent Morel, catcher A.J. Pierzynski and right fielder Carlos Quentin were all given the day off.

"I've got to give the guys some rest," Guillen said. "Obviously, I have to put Dunn in the lineup, and [Ramon] Castro has got to catch a day game after a night game. And like I said earlier, I have to protect [Quentin against] injuries and fatigue."

Guillen said there is nothing wrong with Quentin, who was replaced in right field on Thursday by Mark Teahen, but he wanted to give the right fielder a day off with the White Sox entrenched in a stretch of 13 games in 13 days.

Chicago's skipper said he decided to start Dunn at first instead of the outfield because of challenges provided by the spacious dimensions of Coors Field. Dunn could play in the outfield for a game, or possibly two, when the White Sox wrap up their Interleague road trip against the rival Cubs starting Friday.

"Wrigley Field is easy because he can play right field," Guillen said. "Here, I don't want him to play outfield. The gaps in the this ballpark are too big for him to be chasing balls."

Dunn was slotted in the No. 3 spot in the lineup on Thursday, as he desperately tries to emerge from a season-long slump that had him hitting .173. Guillen is hopeful that Dunn can find consistency in the three-hole.

"Just put him at third [in the lineup] and see what happens," Guillen said. "Hopefully his confidence is back. ... Our lineup is stronger with Dunn hitting third. He can get on base for [Konerko], and I've got another lefty at the top of the lineup. It can make a lot of things happen."

Dunn went 0-for-3 with a walk and no strikeouts in the 6-4, 10-inning victory. He lined into an unassisted double play in the first inning, grounded into a 4-6-3 double play in the fifth, and was replaced by pinch-runner Brent Lillibridge in the seventh inning after walking.