"A New York Treasure" --Village Voice


What Will Johnny Do?

Go back to Boston? Thomas Wolfe said you can never go home again, though Boston was never really Damon’s home, just the most-celebrated stop of his career. On the other hand, Damon was an army brat, so who knows? I assume he’ll end up back at the Fens when all is said and done here, though I’d be amused if he stayed with the Tigers.

Rays manager, Joe Maddon, hopes Damons stays put as well.

Tags:  joe maddon  Johnny Damon

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1 williamnyy23   ~  Aug 24, 2010 1:33 pm

I am with Maddon. I hope Johnny stays in Detroit. Seeing him in a Red Sox uniform again would be unsettling (especially to Cashman). His name spelled backwards is nomad, so my bet is he probably accepts the trade and hits at least one big HR against the Yankees in September.

2 Jonathan   ~  Aug 24, 2010 1:45 pm

I will miss Damon. He stole 2 bases on one pitch during the last fall classic. I will support whatever decision he makes. It would not really surprise me if he went back to Fenway.

3 rbj   ~  Aug 24, 2010 1:53 pm

I couldn't object to Johnny going back to Boston -- it would only be for a month or two, plus he'd have the chance for a post-season berth rather than simply playing out the string in Detroit.

But I'd rather he stay with the Tigers -- I don't want Boston to get stronger.

4 monkeypants   ~  Aug 24, 2010 1:57 pm

I don't see any reason why he would *not* go back to Boston. In either case he's a free agent at the end of the year, and by heading to Boston he has at least a remote shot at contributing to a team still competing for a playoff spot. And, if the Sox get really hot and, go forbid, overtake the Yankees (or TB) for a spot in the playoffs, it might boost JD's free agent value (especially if he can get hot at the end of the year).

5 RIYank   ~  Aug 24, 2010 2:08 pm

Monkeypants, Damon's FA value could go up or down if he puts himself in the spotlight.
I can think of two reasons he might not want to go to Boston. First, I think he's still pissed off at the fans and the management for not showing him sufficient love (the management for laughing when he warned that the Yanks were going to sign him, the fans for doing the usual 'traitor' thing). Second, he might want to use his contractual control to try to get a contract extension. He could say, "I'll veto the move if I don't get an extension", and then the Sox might say "Uh, no thanks", and at that point it might be tough for him to say "I was just kidding, I'll go anyway".

On the other hand, I think he likes some of the Sox' players, a lot.

I wonder what Detroit's asking price is. I bet it's substantial.

6 RIYank   ~  Aug 24, 2010 2:09 pm

Oh, and as long as we're predicting: I predict that if he does return to Boston he will not make a substantial impact.

7 OldYanksFan   ~  Aug 24, 2010 2:16 pm

Of course he goes back... for a shot at the PS... and if the Sox make the PS.... it WOULD BE BECAUSE OF JD.

[5] That is all true, but it doesn't override a chance to get a ring.

8 Mattpat11   ~  Aug 24, 2010 2:17 pm

Wouldn't it be funny if Damon helped the Sox storm into the playoffs while Nick Johnson watches at home?

9 Jonathan   ~  Aug 24, 2010 2:19 pm

RIYank, why would you think that? If Damon gets enough P.T he could make an impact. If by substantial you mean, Damon arrives and the Red Sox make the post season, I think that is a bit out of Damon's capabilities at this point. I think he could make an impact though.

10 williamnyy23   ~  Aug 24, 2010 2:21 pm

[8] Not laughing.

11 RagingTartabull   ~  Aug 24, 2010 2:22 pm

[8] no

12 monkeypants   ~  Aug 24, 2010 2:35 pm

[6] I agree, he would not make a substantial impact most likely. I mean, we are talking about a guy who can't really play in the field any more and is hitting 106 OPS+...that's almost Jeter territory with bat but not at a premium defensive position. Sure, he's an upgrade over whoever they are throwing out there in LF or even CF, but not by so much that he will cause that big of a dent in 25 games.

13 Sliced Bread   ~  Aug 24, 2010 2:39 pm

Damon should tell the Red Sox, and especially their miserable fans to go f themselves.

Would Yankee fans have booed Bernie had he gone to the Sox? I would have cried. I would have vomited. But I would never boo Bernie. I would never treat a player the way Red Sox fans have treated Damon.

Red Sox Nation doesn't deserve the chance to cheer Damon again.

All that nonsense aside - I really think the Rays have a better team, and a better chance to go to the playoffs. He should hold out for a trade with the Rays.

Doesn't he live in Orlando? Wouldn't going to the Rays be like going home and playing on a great team for the rest of the year? Go home, Johnny! Go home to Florida!

14 Mattpat11   ~  Aug 24, 2010 2:44 pm

[10] Oh come on. And we could hear Kay repeat the talking points that the Yankees made the right move anyway for the rest of the year

15 RIYank   ~  Aug 24, 2010 2:55 pm

[12] Right, that's why. He just not that good. He's better than Justin Kalish, and marginally better than Bill Hall and Darnell McDonald. But not enough better to make a substantial difference.

[13] He can't hold out for a trade with the Rays. The Sox have blocked the Rays with their waiver claim.

16 OldYanksFan   ~  Aug 24, 2010 2:55 pm

A little good news:
Our 20 yr old AAA Savior, Jesus, hit his 16th HR over the weekend, and his OPS is now at .850.

Man... he is still so freakin' young!

17 ny2ca2dc   ~  Aug 24, 2010 2:57 pm

Latest from PeteAbe is that Damon is talking to Detroit management about how much playing time he's going to get. If he's going to keep playing, he'll stay. If they're going to play the kids he'll go (in short). Seems like Detroit would want to convince him he won't play so they can dump the contract.

I hope he doesn't go to Boston because I don't want a competitor strengthened, and I felt the Sox org & fanbase treated him contemptuously. But i can't see how accepting the trade is the wrong move for his career.

18 Sliced Bread   ~  Aug 24, 2010 3:00 pm

[15] what happens if he declines to go to Boston? Rays would get to make a claim, no?

19 ms october   ~  Aug 24, 2010 3:06 pm

[18] yeah since damon has a no assignment without permission clause, if he refuses to go to boston then what? can he be put back on waivers? can the tigers trade him to anyone else?

20 OldYanksFan   ~  Aug 24, 2010 3:09 pm

Hughes IP: MLB and MiLB combined (including PS IP)
2006: 124
2007: 115
2008: 70
2009: 111
2010: 140 and counting

At age 24, he's getting to the age where IP are not as much of an issue, but I still think the Yanks may be pushing it.

21 Jonathan   ~  Aug 24, 2010 3:12 pm

ah shucks, I guess you guys are making a good point about Damon. Maybe he does not have the abilities anymore to impact a playoff race. All in all, if he does not go to Boston, since they did claim him after all, I think Detroit has to either make a deal, or they will have to keep Damon for the remainder of the season.

22 williamnyy23   ~  Aug 24, 2010 3:13 pm

[18] Nope...either he goes to Boston or stays in Detroit. Once the team with the lowest record team claims him, they become the only option. Besides, the Rays didn't even put in a claim anyway.

23 Sliced Bread   ~  Aug 24, 2010 3:18 pm

[22] Even if the team is a team the player has designated "no-trade?" Doesn't make sense.

Do we know for sure the Rays didn't make a claim? I've only seen that attributed to Gammons, not a reliable source in this case.
Also, wouldn't the Rays be next in line after Boston, so if Boston passed, it would be up to the Rays to make a claim?

24 williamnyy23   ~  Aug 24, 2010 3:22 pm

[23] That's the way it works. Once a player is placed on waivers, every team can put in a claim, but only one is awarded it. In this case, that was Boston, meaning the the Tigers either dump him, the teams' work out a trade or they pull him back. Even if the Rays did put in a claim, and Gammons is reporting they didn't, they are ineligible to acquire him.

25 williamnyy23   ~  Aug 24, 2010 3:23 pm

[23] Also, the claim process doesn't go one after the other. It's more like a sealed bid auction. Each team has to make their decision without knowing what the other teams have done.

26 Sliced Bread   ~  Aug 24, 2010 3:26 pm

[24] wow, I find it hard to believe the Players Association would allow a team that a player has listed as "no trade" to "claim" him. Seems a violation of his contract. Weird deal.

Oh well. Seems there's nothing we can do about it other than hope Damon declines.

27 Sliced Bread   ~  Aug 24, 2010 3:27 pm

[25] thanks. did not know that's how it works.

28 ms october   ~  Aug 24, 2010 3:29 pm

[26] well, this whole process is bizarre, but because players often put in no-trades to teams strategically, it often actually benefits them to be claimed by (or traded to) a team they have a no trade to - this way damon can negotiate something from the sox if they really want him.

29 RIYank   ~  Aug 24, 2010 3:33 pm

Right, as William says, even though Damon can block a move to Boston, their claim on him prevents any other team from getting him.

[26] Technically Boston is not listed as 'no trade'. It's more like the opposite: he listed eight teams he would go to without further permission, and Boston wasn't one of them. But it amounts to the same thing.

An interesting scenario would be this: Damon vetoes a trade to the Red Sox. The Tigers do not "pull him back". The Sox are eligible to sign him with no compensation to Detroit, but Damon can still say no, he will not accept being picked up by the Sox. Detroit would still have to pay him. And (I think -- this does seem weird) no other team would be eligible to sign him.

30 williamnyy23   ~  Aug 24, 2010 3:35 pm

[26] In addition to no trade clauses, most players also have language in their contracts preventing their contracts from be assigned to a new team without their consent. Reportedly, Damon has that language. So, if he refuses to go, the Tigers are stuck with him.

31 RIYank   ~  Aug 24, 2010 3:36 pm

[30] Exactly. As reported by Tony Masseroti, he has a "player movement" clause. He listed eight teams. To be moved to any other team, he has to give his consent. Boston isn't one of the eight. And the 'movement' is by any means, trade or otherwise.

32 RagingTartabull   ~  Aug 24, 2010 4:42 pm

Damon telling the Detroit press he's "staying"

well that was a fun 24 hours

33 williamnyy23   ~  Aug 24, 2010 5:11 pm

I now like Damon even more. He can say he loves Detroit, but his decision is a giant FU to Boston.

Yankees will also be skipping Vazquez, so sanity has prevailed.

34 rbj   ~  Aug 24, 2010 5:21 pm

[33] Two pieces of good news.

35 Just Fair   ~  Aug 24, 2010 5:25 pm

Damon's a flake. He still has until tomorrow to make up his mind. "Leaning" is not definitive. I hope he stays with the Tigers, too. But I am not going to be excited until tomorrow's deadline passes. Then I'll enjoy his Boston can go F themselves moment.

36 williamnyy23   ~  Aug 24, 2010 5:40 pm

[35] He didn't say leaning. He convened a group of reporters and told them he had made up his mind.

37 RIYank   ~  Aug 24, 2010 6:55 pm

He did say "leaning" earlier (yesterday, I think) but he's pretty definitive now.

And yeah, there's no doubt in anyone's mind that it was a No to Boston rather than an I ❤ Detroit.

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