Monday, January 25, 2010

Getting "Abreu'd": Johnny Damon

I like it when Scott Boras is wrong.

Boras so horribly gauged the market for Damon that the guy is looking at having to take a bargain-basement contract to return to the team he clearly wants to play for (NYY). Once talking about a 3-year $33 million dollar deal, Damon is looking at a reported $3 million, one year deal to return to the Bombers.

This situation, at the Log at least, is affectionately referred to as "getting Abreu'd": when your agent screws you so badly that you sign a massively under market deal just because you'd rather not be unemployed.

From everything I've read, the Braves, A's, Nats, Giants may all have mild interest in Damon, but none of them are going to give him a multi-year deal and none of them are likely to go past a few million bucks either.

Which makes me wonder, relative to the Mariners situation, when does organizational need get trumped by price?

Here's a guy who was 3.0 WAR last year, 3.6 WAR the year before. He would have been third on the M's in HR with 24. He has scored over 100 runs in 10 of the last 12 years. His defense is pretty miserable, but if you can get a 3.0 WAR outfielder/dh for $5 million bucks on a one year contract, you're doing awfully well for yourself. Can you expect him to hit 24 HR's in 2010? No. But if he produces what CHONE projects - .270/17/66/95 with a .355 OBP and 16 steals - that's pretty damn valuable. I'm laughing out loud as I say this, but he could very well be the Mariner cleanup hitter.

He doesn't fit at all with what the M's are needing right now. He's not right handed, he doesn't have plus skills in the outfield, he has no positional versatility. But I'm beginning to wonder when you just take the best deal off the board because it's kind of stupid not to and hang your hat on Jack Hannahan to pull a McLemore for us in 2010. We have a cripple for a LH DH, Milton Bradley has played more than 125 games exactly once in his career, and who knows if Saunders is going to hit at this level. Damon could even spell Guti and his bum knees in center 10 or 12 times (rock paper scissor by the staff on who gets stuck with him).

Does it make any sense to sign Damon? Not really. But he has become such a ridiculous bargain, that it wouldn't surprise me to see Jack pick him up.

He certainly would add to the league's most irritating offense.


Anonymous said...

Grow the beard and we'll pay you, Damon. But seriously - Ichiro, Figgins, Damon would definitely irritate pitchers. Bunt, bunt, bunt, sacs juiced for... hmm... who?

PP said...

The A's are ready to spend some cash, poised to sign Sheets and/or possibly Damon:

Seems like Sheets and a Dye/Damon type of signing makes a lot of sense for Seattle. Or even better...Sheets with The Hammer coming via trade. I'd hate to see Oakland pickup two good players on the cheap. Begs the question though, will it be enough to get them out of last place in the West?

Chase said...

if he were going to cleveland or pittsburgh or whatever, that's one thing - but after the sheets move for the A's to pick up Damon on the cheap, cheap, cheap just seems like an invitation to make the AL West completely up for grabs. You make an interesting case.