Heyman: Yanks Give Damon This Weekend To Accept Low-Ball Offer Before They Sign Another OF Next Week
Check out Brian Cashman going Muammar al-Gaddafi and issuing a “Line of Death” for Johnny Damon’s return to the Yankees. Via Jon Heyman –
Johnny Damon and the Yankees spoke again within the past few days, and Damon now has been given the weekend to decide whether he wants to come back on a bargain deal.
The chances he will accept a low-base contract for a few million dollars (probably no more than $5 million guaranteed) from the Yankees still appear slim, so Damon’s tenure with the team could officially end early next week.
The Yankees plan to sign an outfielder from the remaining list of free agents that includes Reed Johnson, Randy Winn, Xavier Nady, Jim Edmonds and Jermaine Dye by mid-week if Damon doesn’t call them in the next couple days, say people familiar with the situation. The Yankees and Damon spoke by phone late this week and the team is still interested in bringing him back, but only at the right price.
The Yankees are telling free agents they have about $2 million left in their budget. While they may be able to find a few more dollars for Damon, any offer they make wouldn’t be close to what he’s been seeking, so the chances for a deal back in New York still appear pretty remote.
Damon, 37, last month asked the Yankees for $20 million on a two-year deal after hit a career-high 24 home runs, scored 100 runs for the 10th time in his career and helped the Yankees win in their 27th World Series title, but the Yankees were in the process of signing Nick Johnson at that time and said no.
Jim Edmonds? Really? What’s a matter, Jose Cruz Sr. – yes, Sr. and not Jr. – doesn’t want to come out of retirement? And, Karim Garcia is off the market? So, the Yankees are going to let Johnny Damon walk and replace him with a 40-year old Edmonds who sat out last year? Really?
Betcha it’s Rocco Baldelli or Reed Johnson…which is six of one, half-dozen of the other. Stay tuned…