Johnny Damon Considered Retirement?

8:47pm: Yankees' GM Brian Cashman shot down Hairston's comments, tweets Ken Davidoff of Newsday.

8:10pm: Jerry Hairston Jr. was on Jim Bowden's radio show on XM 175 earlier today, and said that the Yankees didn't make him an offer because they're waiting on Damon's price to come down (via Bowden's Twitter). If true, it would seem that it's only matter of time before they get a deal worked out.

12:38pm: David O'Brien of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution feels differently – his source close to Damon says retirement hasn't been considered (Twitter link).

8:43am: Johnny Damon has considered retirement, according to a friend of Damon's who spoke to Bob Klapisch of The Bergen Record.  Keep in mind that Damon pondered the same idea back in Spring Training '07.  However, that March '09 Bill Madden article added that Damon "harbors no more thoughts of retiring when his contract expires after this season."

Though Damon texted "I'm sure things will work out somewhere" to Tyler Kepner of the New York Times, his prospects of a decent contract appear bleak.  ESPN's Buster Olney tweeted Monday that the Yankees haven't made recent contact.  They and the Braves are thought to have only $2MM in the budget.  The Giants and Tigers appear out, though I imagine Damon will find a market if his price drops below $5MM.


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98 Comments on "Johnny Damon Considered Retirement?"


scottandwtb
5 years 7 months ago

I bet he’ll have to take a LaRoche type deal. One year at $4 – $5 million.

Guest
5 years 7 months ago

I think that with the respect that the organization has for Johnny Damon…They will be able to get done. The Yankees that is. Hal Steinbrenner said no to Cashman’s proposal to free up some cash for a mid-season Mike Cameron trade but think about it. When it comes to the Yankees, there is a big difference between Mike Cameron and Johnny Damon. They will work something out. It’s bound to happen.

Deanezag
5 years 7 months ago

“However, that March ’09 Bill Madden article added that Damon “harbors no more thoughts of retiring when his contract expires after this season”

Yeah because Boras told him he could get another 50m in FA.

demetriusminor
5 years 7 months ago

I think the Braves will eventually sign him between 2-5 million, I would say.

demetriusminor
5 years 7 months ago

He’ll probably end up signing with the Braves for about 2-5million…

demetriusminor
5 years 7 months ago

I think he’ll probably end up signing with the Braves in the 2-5 million dollar range…at least i’m hoping he does

bbxxj
5 years 7 months ago

No matter how many times you say it its still not a good idea. We can replicate his offense from Diaz/Cabrera with much better defense at no extra cost.

demetriusminor
5 years 7 months ago

i personally believe the Braves need one more bat or one more piece…damon brings experience…i still think he might sign with Atl..he has expressed interest in playing for Cox

bbxxj
5 years 7 months ago

Damon has more experience, sure.

Diaz is a similar or better hitter who plays better defense and is cheaper.

Damon is a solid downgrade, not an addition.

csg
5 years 7 months ago

No it is a good idea and a smart business decision. You can still platoon Diaz and Melky in RF. This allows Heyward to start the season in June and it gives the braves at least another full season of his services. Yes they spend a little more now, but it gives Heyward the opportunity to season a bit more. Having Diaz, Melky, and Damon is still better than just Diaz, Melky, and hoping Heyward is ready. Look at what the 10 extra days of Lincecum is now costing the Giants. Pay a little over budget now and save money down the road and keep Heyward’s services for another full season while in his prime

NYBravosFan10
5 years 7 months ago

i think the braves have said plenty of times that they aren’t spending any more this offseason. I think they want to save for the trade deadline.

bbxxj
5 years 7 months ago

He is finding out the harsh reality that teams won’t pay for poor defensive players unless they have big time power like Bay. If a team wants a leadoff or #2 hitter they can find them in FA or in their system and find them with much better defense usually at premium spots like MI or CF unlike a power spot like LF where Damon plays.

NL_East_Rivalry
5 years 7 months ago

I agree that the Braves don’t need Damon. I agree that Damon needs to drop his price in this economy to get an offer. I agree he needs Yankees stadium to hit HR’s. Where I disagree with you, is that the Braves are a better team off without him. Unless Bobby decides to bat Diaz 1st against Lefties and McLouth against Righties, I don’t think the team will be as good as I know it can. Adding Damon/Lopez (Felipe can play LF and had an OPS slightly lower than that of Crawford’s) would give us a cheap lead-off hitter who can move McLouth down the order to hit for power. Maybe Wren was right and McLouth has regained his lead-off form, but I wont settle for a .250 something BA for the lead-off guy.

demetriusminor
5 years 7 months ago

If his value falls really low, the Braves could add him…despite poor defense, he still is a very good hitter

bbxxj
5 years 7 months ago

So is Diaz.

Damon in a full season away from Yankee stadium:

.284/.349/.446/.795 16HR 13SB

Diaz in a full season 70% vsRHP 30% vsLHP

.307/.387/.480/.867 19HR 15SB

I’ll stay with Diaz and his above average D in LF thank you.

demetriusminor
5 years 7 months ago

so who would u suggest the braves add or sing?

bbxxj
5 years 7 months ago

1. McLouth CF
2. Prado 2B
3. Chipper 3B
4. Glaus 1B
5. McCann C
6. Escobar SS
7. Heyward RF
8. Diaz LF

So…. nobody. There is noone on the FA market any better than who we have right now.

Its all pointless anyways because Wren isn’t signing anyone else. Sorry.

LawUSA87
5 years 7 months ago

1. McLouth
2. Prado
3. Chipper
4. Diaz
5. McCann
6. Escobar
7. Glaus
8. Cabrera

Is most likely what you looking at but then again who really know what order they will bat til after ST and OD.

RiverKKiller999
5 years 7 months ago

Dude I hope this was a joke because I laughed . …Diaz hitting 4th ? LMAO !!

wilchiro
5 years 7 months ago

Diaz is your cleanup hitter? Ouch…

1. Cabrera LF
2. Prado 2B
3. McLouth CF
4. Jones 3B
5. McCann C
6. Glaus 1B
7. Escobar SS
8. Diaz/Heyward RF

Doubt it will turn out like that, but it fits.

5 years 7 months ago

Diaz doesn’t REALLY have above average D in LF, he’s closer to average. But he is a better defender than Damon. I’d rather see the Braves sign Nady for $3M, in case Glaus goes down. And don’t say Hinske is our back up, he is not starter material anymore.

Alldaybaseball
5 years 7 months ago

Diaz has above average D? I’m a Braves fan don’t get me wrong, but I have heard that he has below average D. Love Diaz though.

bbxxj
5 years 7 months ago

According to UZR/150 he is above average in LF but below average in RF. He has fairly good range but his arm won’t play well anywhere but LF where it is perfectly acceptable.

Now he isn’t an elite double digit UZR/150 LFer but he consistantly posts positive numbers and just by watching him you can tell he gets to most balls, reads the ball well, and has an accurate but maybe a bit weak arm.

thefabs
5 years 7 months ago

If he signs anywhere for 2-5 million, its going to be the Yankees, no way they are going to let him go anywhere else at that price.

NYBravosFan10
5 years 7 months ago

don’t worry i’m sure he’ll end up in some glorious homecoming event in NY because he truly is a “yankee type of guy” barf

Deanezag
5 years 7 months ago

It’s a business, 90% of players go for the money.

NYBravosFan10
5 years 7 months ago

It’s not so much that Damon is demanding money, Scott Boras now has Damon fully brainwashed and has him thinking that he’s God’s gift to baseball. Damon should fire Boras and go to someone that doesn’t frighten lower market teams.

Deanezag
5 years 7 months ago

Boras is good at getting money for prospects and for All-Star FAs. In the past he was good with older veterans too, but a majority of GMs have become smarter and are no longer falling into the trap of giving 35 year olds big money.

BaseballFan0707
5 years 7 months ago

And sadly, Damon is caught in his web of lies.

SullyLV.
5 years 7 months ago

Why would Damon want to play for a team that is going to finish 3-4 in the NL East barf!

eedwards027
5 years 7 months ago

If his price tag drops to 5 mil or under the Pirates need to jump in. Who cares about Jeff Clement playing 1st. He can’t field and know one knows if he can produce at the plate. Put Garrett Jones at first, his natural position, and put Damon in right. Sign him to a one year deal. If he produces and they win, keep him. If he plays well and we loose, trade him for a prospect or two. That being said there is know way that happens.

Since_77
5 years 7 months ago

This wouldn’t work because Damon has no arm whatsoever.

eedwards027
5 years 7 months ago

Yea but it’s not like he is playing center field at the polo grounds. PNC Park has a very short right field. And if he was good enough for the Yankees last year, he should be good enough for the Pirates this year.

JerseyJohn32190
5 years 7 months ago

Damon’s arm isn’t good enough to play RF in a Little Leage field. Runners would go from first to third and second to home all day. Just because he was good enough to play in left for the Yankees doesn’t mean he’s good enough to play in right for the Pirates.

Alldaybaseball
5 years 7 months ago

His arm can’t be worse than Pierre’s. Can it?

BaseballFan0707
5 years 7 months ago

The problem with your theory is that, for all the complaints about RF in the new YS, he was the biggest benefactor of it. He had 17 HRs at home as supposed to only 7 on the road. You won’t get the same power numbers if he plays in PNC park.

pcain1027
5 years 7 months ago

You sir are 100% right about that. I remember watching him in KC and my dad saying Jesus Damon throws like a girl.

5 years 7 months ago

This is a big deal, i think it really shows what Boras is really good at, and what kinds of players should use him. If your a great player, in his prime or about to hit his prime, say hello to Boras, he should be your agent. Players that are past their prime, or maybe that were very good, or just average, should not be using Boras as their agent. Damon years ago when he signed the original contract with the yankees, was fortunate to have Boras as an agent. He got a great contract for him. Now, as an aging player, he has literally priced his way out of baseball in general. The team that he wanted to stay with (Yankees) went out and got younger and better, while spending less money. The braves went out and got Huff, and DeRosa. And the Braves don’t have the money to get him either.

gunger69
5 years 7 months ago

the giants got derosa and huff. get your facts right….sheesh

LawUSA87
5 years 7 months ago

Guess the Giants traded them for cash considerations.

5 years 7 months ago

my bad i stopped paying attention half way through the sentence sorry about that

pmc765
5 years 7 months ago

Rosterbator pretty much nails it.

These unemployed Boras clients don’t have to go home and get a job at Wal-Mart. They can do what the aging Kenny Rogers did in 2007: fire Boras (who had obtained good contracts for him previously) and sign the offer Boras is urging you not to.

Teams have every right to make Boras clients feel stress. It’s good business. It will drive down the price of poker in future years.

Competing agents should be able to land some of these clients.

ptownbrave
5 years 7 months ago

I have to disagree w/ what was said here…

Diaz still hasn’t played a full season as a regular starter, therefore, you can’t say his numbers wouldn’t fall off the table…just look at the year they gave him the gig before he crashed into a wall in Milwaukee…he was awful as a 100% regular…

Damon would give the Braves a leadoff man and allow them to move Nate down the order where he can use his power/speed combo better and balance out the lineup better…It also gives the option to move Cabrera or keep Heyward in AAA til June if they would like.

If nothing else, it incredibly strengthens the bench as well.

Me, I would do it for 3-4 tomorrow IF they had the money…according to what I’ve calculated they should have 5-6 Mil available, yet they say they only have around 2…Thats where I scratch my head…

bbxxj
5 years 7 months ago

Because he struggled in 135 AB two years ago means he is an awful regular player? Not sure I follow.

I would look at his .310/.358/.459/.817 line in 1280 career AB and his clear improvement against RHP and on defense. I mean he posted a .349 OBP vsRHP and a 1.103 OPS vsLHP (.921 career OPS vsLHP) and a sold/average 2.9 UZR/150 in LF (6.2 career UZR/150 in LF).

So basically you don’t like a guy who absolutely mauls LHP, gets on base against and still hits RHP, and plays above average D in LF with some speed on the basepaths… for no extra cost.

YanksFanSince78
5 years 7 months ago

I’m all for the Yanks showing some restraint and working within a budget but enough is enough already. The market has come back to them and Damon is sitting there waiting for them. Put the offer of 2/14 back on the table or even 1/$7 mil with an option for the same. There is little doubt that the Yanks would be an even better lineup with Damon as their #2. Let’s not allow $5 mil to get in the way. You never know when an injury might thin things out. I could live with his noodle arm for one more year. Step up Cash!! Put the $7 mil offer out there once and for all. If he passes then we move on.

0bsessions
5 years 7 months ago

Why put that offer back on the table when there’s no one else willing to offer that much? I understand that the Yanks have oddles of money and all that, but throwing out that kind of offer when they don’t even really have all that much use for him is a big part of why people hate the Yankees’ spending philosophy. Yeah, he’d make their team better, but they’ve already got a payroll over double that of the majority of the league. Let ONE player walk.

I for one applaud Cashman for sticking to his guns on this.

5 years 7 months ago

Because you don’t want to end up like the Mets and with Molina.

BaseballFan0707
5 years 7 months ago

I’m pretty sure Mets fans are estatic about that one.

Deanezag
5 years 7 months ago

I agree with Cashman sticking to his guns.
Damon has no market right now, there is no need for the Yankees to give him 1/7m or 2 years.

5 years 7 months ago

Not 2/14, why would you give him a 2 year deal. One at the most. Then you figure 1 year 3-5 million will probably get him at this point

5 years 7 months ago

I completely agree with you. I would offer him 1 year 7 million with an option for 2011. That’s sounds like a good deal to me. Plus we need to bolster our bench now cause Jerry Jr. and Hinske moved on.

iowacubs
5 years 7 months ago

and the Cubs signed Marlon Byrd for how much…..

BaseballFan0707
5 years 7 months ago

Jim Hendry. That is all.

dickylarue
5 years 7 months ago

This story will do NOTHING to help Damon’s prospects. I truly think the revelation that he was thinking of retiring early on in his Yankees contract has stung him. Torre talked about it in his “book” and it appears his motivation is in question yet again.

Why would any team ask a player who still believes he’s a top star in the league to take a massive pay cut when they know he’s been thinking of walking away from the game for years now.

Damon, apparently, was involved in some kind of Madoff like financial mess last year. Nady was involved in it too. In spring training last year, there were stories about how all of Damon’s credit cards and accounts were closed due to this.

I don’t know if it was straightened out or not or what his losses were from the money/fund manager who screwed him and other athletes, but I think the initial number Boras was spouting was to try to make up for the money Damon lost.

The Yankees did well not to fall in the trap and now their 2 year 14 million offer is a pipe dream that can’t be recreated for Damon.

I can’t imagine the Yankees taking him back since he will be so stung by the way the market collapsed on him. He’s already an emotional player who has considered walking away from the game. I think a lot of GM’s know whatever contract he signs will be perceived as a slap in the face to Damon’s ego at this point and they don’t want to deal with the drama.

It’s a shame since I think he’s still one of the best clutch hitters around. He still works pitchers till they give in to him and he’s a fun guy to watch as a fan. His arm is horrible, but he gets to more balls in the OF than some of the other OF’ers who are making a lot more than him.

His demise has been overblown by statheads. Add in Boras asking for the moon and you can see why Damon is sitting here in January with no idea where he’s going to play.

His best bet is to re-engage the Yankees independent of Boras and attempt to convince them he won’t be slighted by the contract if they are fair with him and show him they still want him.

pcain1027
5 years 7 months ago

One thing is for sure he isnt going to hit 24 HRs if he isnt playing half of his games at Yankee stadium

NYYANKEES
5 years 7 months ago

Boras really needs to start thinking global for Damon (likely Japan). And I am dead serious about it.

LTDm206
5 years 7 months ago

What a baby.

Do you still want to play the game? Then sign for what is available.

Retirement and salary demands should be 2 separate issues.