Last week Scott Boras announced that his client, Johnny Damon, will sign with a major league club by May 1. The veteran outfielder/designated hitter is seeking an opportunity that will provide him with at least 450 plate appearances this season. According to Nick Carfado, people around the game of baseball can’t figure out why Damon is still available. One unnamed general manager wondered why teams like the Baltimore Orioles, Tampa Bay Rays, Cleveland Indians and Detroit Tigers haven’t taken a flier on Damon yet.
The American League GM that Carfado spoke to characterized Damon’s un-signing as “a mystery”. Carfado said that it’s not just this unnamed front office executive that is puzzled by the veteran’s continued availability. According to Carfado, anytime Damon’s name comes up, “baseball people shake their heads”.
Carfado and this unnamed GM aren’t the first to tie Damon to the Indians. After it became apparent that the Tribe was interested in similar outfield/DH-type player Bobby Abreu, many wondered why Cleveland wouldn’t also or instead pursue Damon.
Luke Scott should work out just fine for the Rays, and Baltimore already signed Wilson Betemit this offseason to act as their primary DH. The Indians connection makes sense, but they appear to be satisfied with Shelley Duncan until Grady Sizemore returns
We’re likely still a few weeks away from finding out where Damon will land. Wherever he does ultimately end up, it appears that he’s now accepted his position as veteran role player rather than starter.