When Johnny Damon showed up to Old Timers Day, the first thing that probably comes to your mind is, “Johnny Damon’s an Old Timer?” Damon’s not in his 50′s or 60′s but he revealed his reason for accepting the Yankees invitation.
“It’s not an easier way for me to get back on a big league field, so I might as well start considering myself an old timer,” Damon joked.
I paid close attention to Damon during the game, seeing how he almost had a grand slam but settled for a two-run double, and he fields center field almost as if he never left. I even tweeted why Damon left the game of baseball considering he still looks as athletic as he was while playing for the Yankees. It turns out, leaving baseball wasn’t Damon’s choice.
Damon last played for the Cleveland Indians in 2012 before he was designated for assignment on August 3rd after hitting .215 in 50 games. He waited for the phone to ring, but it never did.
“I definitely didn’t think I was going to be finished then, but that’s how it goes,” Damon said to the New York Post.
While a comeback seems slim, Damon is optimistic that he could get what could be his last chance. In fact, he hadn’t turned in his retirement papers yet.
Damon reveals he was invited to Old Timers Day last year, but he declined with hopes that a big league team would call him with a job opening. This year, Damon took the chance to say thank you to the Yankees fans that cheered him on during his tenure with the Bronx Bombers.
“It’s great. The big reason why I’m here is because of the fans,” he said. “They really appreciated the way I went about my business and the way I played. I wanted them to see me again. It means a lot to me. I was very fortunate and blessed we were able to win a championship here. Because of that, I can show my face here as much as I like.”