ORLANDO -- Chicago White Sox general manager Kenny Williams met with Adam Dunn's agent in preliminary discussions on what Dunn is expecting in free agency this offseason, according to a major league source.
The 31-year-old Dunn averaged 40 homers and 100 RBIs the past seven seasons. Numerous teams, including Washington where Dunn spent the past two seasons, are interested in the left-handed slugger.
One major league general manager told ESPNChicago.com that the starting point for Dunn will be a three-year, $40-million deal.
"Anytime you spend time opening up dialogue and building on relationships, it can't help but to forge a deal at some time," said Williams, in response to a question about talking to agents at Major League Baseball's general manager meetings. "Whether that helps this year or not remains to be seen."
As far as building his team in the offseason, Williams admitted he didn't know which way the White Sox were going. He said he could possibly bring back free agents Paul Konerko and A.J. Pierzynski or go the younger route.
"We are in the process right now of determining whether or not adding to the current mix we have would be the most prudent thing to do and gives us the best chance to win a championship or turning some of our players into young, impact guys," he said. "What we don't want to do is we don't want to be in the middle."
Williams said that the entire free agent market place seemed a little different this offseason -- especially for the White Sox.
"To a large degree I'm in more of a listening mode than I've ever been coming to these meetings," he said. "I have to wait to see what's available to us via free agency or via trade. I have to see what gives us the best chance to win in 2011 and beyond that as well. Right now there's no defined path."
Bruce Levine covers baseball for ESPNChicago.com.