CHICAGO -- Adam Dunn will not be able to leave Spring Training in Arizona to attend the Academy Awards in California on Mar. 2 because he'll have work to do for the regular season. But Dunn will be showing full support for the movie Dallas Buyers Club, one of nine Best Picture nominees -- and a film in which he had a small part as bartender Neddie Jay.
Dunn is an investor in his friend Joe Newcomb's production company, which produced this movie that ended up with six Oscar nominations -- including Matthew McConaughey for Best Actor in a Leading Role and Jared Leto for Best Actor in a Supporting Role. Dunn's two scenes were overlooked by the Academy.
"It seems like that always happens. The Gold Glove, every year I get snubbed on that, so I'm used to it," said Dunn with a wry smile. "That's pretty special, being the first movie. To get six Oscar nominations, that's pretty cool. It's been a fun little thing."
White Sox manager Robin Ventura, who knew about Dunn's involvement in the project, went to see the movie with his wife, Stephanie, on Friday night after SoxFest festivities. He enjoyed the film, even with the minor distraction of seeing his designated hitter working behind the bar.
"All of a sudden, it took my focus off the movie -- and all of a sudden, you're watching him act," Ventura said. "He's believable. He looks like he would be doing that job. He looks like he fits that role.
"Just physically what they did to prepare for that is just amazing. You would think there was some special effect, but it was an interesting movie."
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.