While the Yankees’ transition to the post-Bernie Williams era, Johnny Damon quietly has emerged as a possible choice to be their next center fielder, according to an industry source familiar with the team’s plans.
Damon’s candidacy was initially dismissed by the Yankees, who were convinced the free agent was committed to returning to the Red Sox.
While Boston remains Damon’s first option, friends of the outfielder now say “everyone’s in, including the Yankees” after the Sox passed on the opportunity to sign him to a three-year, $31 million contract last spring.
Damon now is willing to listen to the Yankees. Question is, will they nibble?
Damon’s friend said on Friday, “Six months ago, there’s no way Johnny would’ve even considered the Yankees. He’s thinking about it now.”
The Yankees’ front office met in Tampa on Friday to revise the off-season battle plan. So far, Giles is still at the top of Cashman’s list. But Damon is at least on the Yankees’ minds. This could get interesting.
Boy, I hope this is just smoke to drive up the price for the Red Sox.