Tuesday, December 20, 2005

The Passion of the Bronx

Word is out that the New York Yankees have signed Johnny Damon away from their rivals, the Boston Red Sox. Damon heads south to the bronx with a brand new 4 year, $52 million contract in hand - a reported $3 million per year more than what the Red Sox formally offered.

A few quick thoughts:

• I really hope the Sox can swing a deal for Jeremy Reed or someone to fill the void - it may mean giving up Bronson Arroyo, and not Matt Clement as they had hoped, but they need someone to play Center, and there aren't a lot of options.

• I won't be too sad to see Damon leave; he played well, and was an integral part of the championship team, but he's getting worse and worse defensively, and I can't help but think he's a year or two away from a steep drop off offensively.

• As I noted above, the only known offer from the BoSox to Johnny was for 4 years and $40 million. Until more details come out over whether or not the Sox were willing to go higher (and if Johnny would have accepted their deal ahead of New York), I won't pass judgement on how Lucchino, Hoyer and Company handled this. I will give them credit for not jumping into a long-term deal, and making a sensible offer at the Winter Meetings. That being said, they lost out on a player they desperately wanted to resign, so I'm curious to know why.

• I wish they had kept Dave Roberts; he would have been excellent insurance for this situation.

• I guess the rumors that the Yanks were only interested in Damon to try and drive up the price for Boston are false, unless they somehow accidentally ended up with a deal. I like to imagine them making an offer, Scott Boras accepting on the spot, then a group of Yankee executives conferencing, then ultimately deciding to sign the deal because they were too embarrassed to admit they were hoping he wouldn't accept it. On a side note, this exact strategy is how I ended up with Brian Billick as my Head Coach in Madden.

Go Sox!


At 10:40 PM, Blogger Alex said...

Courtesy of The Boston Globe, a few quotes from Damon given to a local TV station. To me, they sound like a mix of bitterness and arrogance. My favorite:

“No, (the Red Sox did not match the offer), I talked to Tito (Francona) and I told him they had to 'really get going' … (I) had other plans, I'm not sure if they knew I meant it but I'm a Yankee. Hopefully now they'll go off and get one of the center fielders they've been courting for the last month or so.”

"(Red Sox) fans are going to be upset. I hope they remember the great World Series and the three out of four years we made the playoffs. I appreciate them… I tried to come back.”

I wish he'd just say "the Yankees offered me more money and I took it. I didn't find $10 million a year acceptable. Instead, he seems to be pinning all the blame on the Sox front office.

I was hoping for this to be an amicable split, but if Johnny Drama keeps this attitude up I'll be rooting for him to hit .220 and for Mario Lopez to stop returning his calls about ESPN Hollywood.

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At 10:11 AM, Blogger The Armchair Quarterback said...

I'm not sure if I will be horrified or relieved to see Damon without the hair. I do know it will be strange.


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