• Damon Now A Yankee?

    Posted by on December 20th, 2005 · Comments (11)

    I just saw this link over at BaseballThinkFactory.orgfrom CBS 4 in Boston:

    (CBS4) BOSTON CBS4’s Dan Roche is reporting that Johnny Damon has agreed to a four-year deal with the New York Yankees.

    Story to come.

    (© MMV, CBS Broadcasting, Inc. All Rights Reserved.)

    It was posted there, at the CBS site, at 10:23 pm EST. It’s now almost 40 minutes later. If true, you think it would be all over the place in that amount of time.

    Very interesting though.

    UPDATE, 12/20 11:10 pm EST: The AP is running with this now too:

    NEW YORK (AP) — The New York Yankees grabbed center fielder Johnny Damon away from the rival Boston Red Sox, reaching a preliminary agreement Tuesday night on a $52 million, four-year contract.

    Details of the deal were still being negotiated and Damon must pass a physical, a baseball official said on condition of anonymity because negotiations were not yet final.

    I guess that “before X-mas” vibe that I had was not so far off after all!

    UPDATE, 12/20 11:15 pm EST: Newsday’s got it now as well:

    Johnny Damon and the Yankees have agreed to a four-year, $52 million deal, Newsday has learned.

    I said in the past that I would have been OK with three years. I guess four is close enough to three.

    One thing is for sure – the guy is not going to melt in the media. That won’t be an issue. And, he’s another bat – and that will help.

    The money? Thirteen million a year seems like a lot. But, if it was ten a year, that would have been a good deal for the Yankees. So, what’s another three a year on top of that? Bernie made $12 million last year. It’s almost a wash.

    UPDATE, 12/20 11:32 pm EST: Just something to sleep on now, from the database at BaseballMusings.comDamon’s recent numbers at Yankee Stadium:


    Meanwhile, Johnny was an on-base machine at Fenway Park the last four years.

    That is a tad concerning. Then again, Wade Boggs made the adjustment in 1993 with no problem.

    Comments on Damon Now A Yankee?

    1. Mike Z
      December 20th, 2005 | 11:25 pm

      Despite the possible downside to this signing often mentioned throughout the Yankee blog community, I must admit I am at least somewhat pleased by this news.

      Of course, it might just be the desperation caused by my Baseball Withdrawal Syndrome, but I am pleasantly surprised by this news.

    2. December 20th, 2005 | 11:39 pm

      Look at it this way, at least now Seattle or Cleveland can hold up the Red Sox in a trade for a CF, if they’re smart.

    3. Jen
      December 20th, 2005 | 11:40 pm

      Wow. Roll call will be interesting next year.

    4. December 20th, 2005 | 11:42 pm

      Just imagine the response he’ll get on the first trip to Fenway.

    5. DownFromNJ
      December 20th, 2005 | 11:48 pm

      I have to say, I didn’t expect the Yankees to get Damon. It’s a massive contract, but at least he didn’t get his 5th year.

      He’ll improve the Yankees short term and hurt them long term. I have to say, with Dotel and Damon, I am having trouble envisioning a scenario where the Yankees will not win the AL East in 2006.

    6. Nick from Washington Heights
      December 20th, 2005 | 11:59 pm

      This offense is scoring over 1000 runs. You think, Steve?

    7. JeremyM
      December 21st, 2005 | 12:27 am

      I have to say I dreaded the possibility of this move, but now that it’s here I’m pumped. Yeah, his defense isn’t that great but I think he’ll still bring a lot to the table. The Yanks needed a table setter, all respect to Jeter but this really sets up our lineup. I had a feeling that this move would happen as soon as they lost out on Nomar. And 4 years isn’t that bad, really. I mean hey, this guy is as good as Rickey at the same stage:)

      That said, man is this guy a sellout or what! He creates this huge image as a hippie, basically, and now he joins the Yankees. Too funny. Hopefully it’s not as awkward for him as it was for Giambi.

    8. JeremyM
      December 21st, 2005 | 12:29 am

      And lost in all this is something else to celebrate: New York allowed left-hander Wayne Franklin to become a free agent, failing to offer a 2006 contract by the midnight EST deadline.

    9. December 21st, 2005 | 1:12 am

      I like the deal. He’s gonna be 35 when the contract expires, which isn’t too bad. And it plugs hole for us while creating one for the Sux.

      I’m more concerned with Sheffield holding up than a guy we signed at only 32 years old who hit .316 last season.

    10. jonm
      December 21st, 2005 | 1:22 am

      Damon actually had excellent range this year (check out Gassko’s numbers in the new Hardball Times book). Plus, as an added bonus, remember that this means that Joe can’t plug Bernie into CF next year.

      I like this deal. It’s fun and entertaining — the most recognizable Red Sox player coming to NY will provide great drama next year.

      Damon has virtually no platoon split. Bernie hit much better last year. Bernie had much more power hitting lefty last year. I think that means that the Yankees’ extra bat should be right-handed. Eric Byrnes, who was non-tendered, would be a great fit in my opinion. He had a big platoon split last year and strikes me as an excellent role/bench player.

    11. Raf
      December 21st, 2005 | 8:24 am

      That said, man is this guy a sellout or what! He creates this huge image as a hippie, basically, and now he joins the Yankees. Too funny. Hopefully it’s not as awkward for him as it was for Giambi.


      If it’s the “hair” issue, he was clean shaven as a Royal and an Athletic.

      I guess it’s a good signing; the lineup just got deeper, and he can play CF.

      I’m not concerned with his numbers @ Yankee Stadium; after all, he was facing Yankee pitching in a pitcher’s park.

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