After a long winter of speculating about where Johnny Damon would play it appears that the two-time World Champion has finally made a decision as to where he will play in 2010.
The Detroit Tigers have stepped in with an offer that apparently was to Damon's liking. It is reportedly a one-year deal worth about $8 million.
All is pending a physical, which sources say should be taken today or tomorrow.
The deal makes sense for both sides:
With former Tiger center fielder Curtis Granderson likely to occupy Damon's former spot in left field at Yankee Stadium this season, Detroit gets a bat to replace Granderson's at the top of the lineup. Not to mention another veteran presence.
For Damon, he has actually found someone willing to offer a contract close to the crazy demands of he and agent Scott Boras.
As I Yankee fan, I still believe Damon made a big mistake. And at this point, I'd be willing to bet he believes that too.
The New York Yankees were reportedly offering Johnny a two-year contract worth about $14 million at the beginning of the off-season. Boras and Damon demanded at least $13 million a year and claimed that they could find that number elsewhere on the open market.
Well, the Yankees called their bluff and basically cut ties with Damon after that. Another contract worth about $2 million a year was set down on the table by New York in early January, however, as expected, Damon turned his nose up at that offer.
Meanwhile, the Yankees managed to sign players such as designated hitter/first baseman Nick Johnson, and outfielders Randy Winn and Marcus Thames. This basically eliminated any need that the team might have had for Damon.
So after fielding many other one year offers from teams such as the Atlanta Braves and Chicago White Sox, Johnny has finally settled on Detroit, the team that was offering the most money.
I enjoyed Johnny Damon's time in pinstripes. I really did. Whether he was stealing a base in the World Series, or hitting a walk-off home run into the short right field porch at Yankee Stadium during the regular season, he was one of the funnest players I have ever observed during my time as a Yankee fan.
However, after leaving the Boston Red Sox for New York for a bigger contract after 2005, and now leaving New York for Detroit due to sloppy negotiations, it is clear that Johnny Damon's loyalty is to the dollar and not the team...or winning the World Series, for that matter.