According to Jerry Crasnick of ESPN, Johnny Damon‘s agent Scott Boras is trying to engage the Cincinnati Reds in talks with the free agent outfielder. The Reds interest is hard to gauge right now, but they do have a hole in left field.
The article also mentions the Tigers as a possible destination, which is one I have denied in the past, but it is hard to ignore the fact that Boras has talked the Tigers into signing some of his clients to no-so-wonderful contracts in the past. They also could seek to replace Placido Polanco in their lineup. For that’s still a longshot in my book so for now we’ll focus on the Reds.
From ESPN: “Cincinnati’s outfield alignment currently consists of Jay Bruce in right field, Drew Stubbs in center field and Chris Dickerson in left. The Reds’ leadoff hitters also ranked last in the major leagues with a .650 OPS in 2009.
The catch is, the Reds and Tigers don’t appear to have much money left in the budget. Both clubs have been economizing this offseason, and that might be truer than ever now that Cincinnati has signed Cuban pitcher Aroldis Chapman and Detroit has added closer Jose Valverde. Both teams would probably have to get creative to make a run at Damon.”
The bottom line is that there are a few teams out there this winter that wouldn’t mind having Damon and if his price drops low enough it might actually happen. However, Boras will have to get real here and realize this and he certainly has to stop trying to talk the Yankees into thinking that just because Cincinnati might have interest that they are going to offer him much more than $5 million.