06/24/08 7:11 PM ET
Dunn denies phone call with Ricciardi
Outfielder says he never reached out to talk with Jays' GM
By Mark Sheldon / MLB.com
A controversy brewed last week when Ricciardi publicly criticized Dunn during his weekly call-in radio show in Toronto. Since then, Ricciardi had been trying to contact Dunn personally on the phone after already apologizing to Dunn through the media."I talked to Adam on Saturday, so I see it as a dead issue," Ricciardi told a group of reporters on Tuesday afternoon. "He called me. I tried to get his phone and I wasn't having any luck. He had called me. I told him I made a mistake and apologized. I let my guard down, which I shouldn't have done, but I did. All I can do is apologize." Found in the clubhouse tunnel on the visitor's side of the field, Dunn was emphatic that he never called Ricciardi and that the two haven't spoken. "What? Not true. One million percent," Dunn told MLB.com after being informed of Ricciardi's comments. When told of what Dunn said, Ricciardi was adamant that he spoke to the player on the phone. "All I know is the person I talked to said it was Adam Dunn," Ricciardi said. "That's quite a prank to pull." Ricciardi said he deleted the caller's number from his cell phone. The Reds' first visit to Toronto for Interleague Play this week immediately took on added interest last Wednesday night, when Ricciardi was hosting his weekly call-in show. A caller asked about whether the Blue Jays should trade for Dunn. "Do you know that the guy really doesn't like baseball all that much?" was among Riccardi replies. "Do you know the guy doesn't have a passion to play the game that much? We've done our homework on guys like Adam Dunn and there's a reason we don't want Adam Dunn." An unhappy Dunn responded last week by calling Ricciardi "some clown sitting in the front office pushing paper." This isn't the first time Ricciardi has been involved in controversy. In early May 2007, he admitted during his radio show that the Blue Jays intentionally fabricated a story to cover up closer B.J. Ryan's left elbow injury. The club falsely reported Ryan was suffering a back injury.
Mark Sheldon is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.