CHICAGO -- Designated hitter Adam Dunn was speaking about more than his personal 7-for-69 start to the 2013 season when addressing a disappointing first three weeks.
"We can't play any worse than what we're playing now," Dunn said before going 0-for-4 in Monday's 3-2 loss to the Indians. "Obviously, we're getting good pitching but other than that, terrible. I don't know how far back we are but the reassuring thing is we're playing our worst baseball of the season and if you're going to play bad baseball, you might as well do it now.
"Offensively, we've had one guy hit for most of the year. But other than that, sporadic. Obviously, that's going to pick up and when that does, that'll pick up the intensity defensively. It'll probably pick up the intensity for the pitchers. It seems like when everyone's hitting, everything seems to come together. So we need to start whacking it."
Alex Rios and his .300 average stands as that one consistent hitter, although Alexei Ramirez was at .300 before going 0-for-4 on Monday as the club fell to 7-12.
Remember, though, that the 2012 White Sox under Robin Ventura started 10-6, quickly dipped to 17-21 and 4 1/2 games out of first place in the American League Central and then won 13 of their next 14 and 54 of 88 to move a season-high 16 games over .500 at 71-55.
The White Sox ended Monday in last place in the AL Central but just four games behind the division-leading Royals. Ventura is one who always focuses on the positive and wasn't about to quantify the seriousness of the situation through 19 games.
"Again, when you lose, you just lose. As bad as you can play? Anything can always get worse," Ventura said. "I'd rather us focus on what we're doing and just continue to play hard. Losing is not easy, it's not fun. I get what [Dunn] is trying to say, but I've also seen worse. So any time you say it can't get worse, it can get worse.
"Any time you don't score runs, it gets similar when you don't score runs in the past. It's one of those where you have to find the answer rather than just sit there and say it reminds me of another time. Focus on the good stuff and go from there."
Scott Merkin is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Merk's Works, and follow him on Twitter @scottmerkin. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.