After signing their lucrative off-season contracts this week, new Chicago acquisitions Carlos Pena of the Cubs and Adam Dunn of the White Sox have come together on a friendly wager to celebrate their new city.
The two sluggers have agreed in principle that the first to reach the 200 strikeout plateau will receive an extra-large deep dish pizza from Lou Malnatti’s and a case of Old Style from the other. The early betting line gives the edge to the new Cubs first baseman, who has averaged 162 K’s over the past three years, and last season batted a paltry .196.
“Now that I’ll be playing in the pitcher-friendly National League, I expect to hit the 200 K mark by July 1, at the latest,” said Pena. “I can already taste that buttery crust and the oozing melty cheese.”
Dunn, who three times led the NL in strikeouts, isn’t conceding the race to Pena so quickly.
“Me strike out 200 times by June 1,” said the Paul Bunyanesque slugger, who struck out 199 times last season. “Dunn love Old Style. Dunn drink 24 cans in one sitting.”
When told about the wager, Cubs $136 million man Alfonso Soriano threw his hat into the ring.
“Oh no problem, I can hit the 200 K mark by the end of Spring Training,” said Soriano. “I will be the winner, no doubt.”
By Jeremy Barewin