Please make it end. Damon, sign somewhere!

It’s dragged on for weeks – or months? I lose track — but soon Johnny Damon is going to end our long national nightmare and sign with a baseball team.

No, but seriously, it’ll be over soon everybody. And yes, as we’ve said here all along, there’s a real chance Damon could end up leading off and playing left field for the Bravos. Not saying it’s likely, but there’s a reasonable chance.

This isn't Johnny Damon's zebra. It's one that got loose from the circus and ran through downtown Atlanta Thursday. Figured you'd seen enough Damon photos. (Ben Gray/AJC)

This isn't Johnny Damon's zebra. It's one that got loose from the circus and ran through downtown Atlanta Thursday. Figured you'd seen enough Damon photos. (Ben Gray/AJC)

It’s seemed odd to me that the Braves’ interest in Damon was practically dismissed by a couple of other media outlets in the last week, Atlanta described as having only lackluster interest and not making a serious push for him.

The team that made him an offer nearly two weeks ago, before Detroit or the Chicago White Sox made offers. The team that had Chipper Jones call Damon the same day it made its offer, to emphasize to him how much the Braves wanted him and how well he’d fit in their lineup and on their team.

Then again, I shouldn’t have been surprised their interest was still being downplayed. After all, right up until the day we first reported here that the Braves made an offer to Damon and had Chipper call him, another media outlet was still insisting that the Braves weren’t actively pursuing him.

To clarify: They made him an offer nearly two weeks ago and had Chipper personally call Damon and make a sales pitch. That’s serious interest, folks. The Braves might downplay it later, because what else would they say? “We really needed Damon at the top of our order.  It might be a long season now.”

And if they don’t end up getting him because they legitimately didn’t have the money to raise their offer, it doesn’t mean the Braves weren’t seriously interested in Damon, does it? (I don’t know how much they have to spend, but I believe now that they’re close to their limit. I say this because the Braves, this season, wouldn’tpossibly  set themselves up for the PR hit of missing out on Damon over a measly mill or two if they had plenty left in their budget. Would they?)

And so, if they do end up signing Damon as their left fielder and leadoff hitter, will some in the media still downplay it? Perhaps make it sound as if they got him only because Damon was left in a blanket outside general manager Frank Wren’s condo in Orlando, with instructions to please treat this poor thing well and give him an opportunity?

OK, one photo of Damon. This is him with his wife and a bunch of their kids visiting the large theme park down the street from Dark Star.

OK, one photo of Damon. This is him with his wife and a bunch of their kids visiting the large theme park down the street from Dark Star.

Clearly, the Braves want Damon in their lineup. It’s why they decided a couple of weeks before spring training that it was important enough to make an offer and have their star player make a sales pitch, even if his signing might disrupt things and possibly necessitate a subsequent trade to relieve the outfielder glut if Jason Heyward is too ready to ignore for opening day.

If the Tigers only offered Damon a one-year, $7 mill offer that includes some deferred money, well, then the Braves’ initial offer — believed to be worth about $4.5 million with some money deferred — might be just about enough to ultimately bring Damon to Atlanta.

Or he could go to the White Sox, who initially offered the same or slightly more than the Braves, also with some money deferred.

It’s pretty clear to me that Damon and his wife would prefer living in Atlanta to Detroit – nothing personal, Motor City — and Damon’s Orlando home is only minutes from the Braves’ spring training site (I could get to his place in 10-15 minutes from the condo I’m in, which is between Dark Star and Damon’s crib).

The Tigers train in Lakeland, which is also close to here. But not as close. Not minutes away. More like an hour – and that’s if there’s no traffic snarl on I-4. As for the Sox, they train in Arizona, so that’s a minus in their ledger. (I know, all that’s been covered before; just restating it, one final time.)

But ultimately, the decision is not going to be made based on proximity of spring training. It’s probably going to be tied to the overall appeal of the team and city, the team’s chances to make the postseason, and the city being somewhere the Damons would like to live for the next nine months or more.

And, yes, to some degree it’ll be about money. But not to nearly the degree as typical Scott Boras-negotiated contracts. Because as Boras told me long before the Damon bidding began, in shorter contracts for the amounts we’re talking in this deal, the offers just aren’t likely to be more than a few mill apart.

Damon’s made nearly $100 million playing baseball. Is an extra $2 mill or $3 mill from the Tigers enough to sway him to go there over a place he’d rather spend this season, if he’d rather be in Atlanta or Chicago?

(BLOGMEISTER ADDENDUM: $2-3 mill might not have been, but doubling the Braves’ offer apparently was. That’s about what the $8 mill deal Damon reportedly agreed to today is worth, if there’s little or no deferred money involved. Now we return to the rest of the apparently now-a-moot-point blog, since it appears Damon is a Tiger after he passes a physical Sunday.)

If Chicago’s offer is still on the table until Sunday — there were some reports Friday that it had been pulled, but later it was reported that it was still available if Damon took it by Sunday — then keep this little-known stat in mind: According to the 2010 Bill James Handbook, the White Sox’ home ballpark (U.S. Cellular Field) was the only AL park where it’s been as easy for lefties to hit home runs than at new Yankee Stadium in 2009. Might be an important factor for a veteran on a one-year contract looking at free agency again a year from now, a guy who hit 17 of his 24 homers in 2009 in home games, raising eyebrows about his remaining power at age 37.

Atlanta and Chicago fit the latter part of the “desirable” equation, the city part. Detroit? Like I said, Atlanta and Chicago fit the latter part of the desirable equation.

The flight from Atlanta to Orlando is so quick, Damon’s wife and kids could split time between the cities (I don’t know if that’s something they’d even consider; I’m just saying it’d be possible.)

The Tigers and White Sox are AL teams, perhaps a plus for Damon. However, he still believes he can play virtually every day in the outfield and wouldn’t need to spend time in the DH position for rest. So maybe it’s not a big deal at all.

One more time: Should the Braves sign Johnny Damon?

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Playoffs? The Braves have at least as good a shot as either of those other two at earning a wild-card berth or possibly even making a run at the division title, if they add Damon to the top of their lineup and keep Troy Glaus and the pitching staff reasonably healthy. And, oh yeah, if Damon is seriously attracted to the chance to play for Bobby Cox, this is presumably the last chance.

So we’ll see. If the Tigers don’t guarantee a second year in their offer or raise the one-year offer and eliminate all the deferred money, then I get a feeling Damon will sign with the White Sox or Braves.

And if being close to home for spring training and also during the season is a big factor at all, then how could he pass on the chance to play for Cox and the Braves, who appear to have at least as good a playoff shot as the White Sox?

Decisions, decisions. Make one, Damon. Dammit.

Our one-time reminder: Braves single-game tickets will go on sale Wednesday, including the April 5 opening day game against the Chicago Cubs and the just-announced Bobby Cox tribute night on Saturday, Oct. 1, Oct. 2 against Philadelphia.

The ducats will be sold through Braves.com/tickets; at the Braves Ticket Office at Turner Field, the Braves Clubhouse Store at the CNN Center, and all PUBLIX Ticketmaster outlets, or by calling 1-800-745-3000.

3165106523_31becff4d0

“LORETTA” by Townes Van Zandt

Oh Loretta she’s a barroom girl

Wears them sevens on her sleeve

Dances like a diamond shines

Tell me lies I love to believe

Her age is always 22

Her laughing eyes a hazel hue

Spends my money like water falls

Loves me like I want her to

Oh, Loretta, won’t you say to me

Darling, put your guitar on

Have a little shot of booze

Play a blue and wailing song

My guitar rings a melody

My guitar sings, Loretta’s fine

Long and lazy, blonde and free

And I can have her any time

Sweetest at the break of day

Preattiest in the setting sun

She don’t cry when I can’t stay

’least not till she’s all alone

Loretta, I won’t be gone long

Keep your dancing slippers on

Keep me on your mind a while

I’ll be back, babe, to make you smile

802 comments Add your comment

uga-brave

February 20th, 2010
1:59 am

Nelson S.

February 20th, 2010
2:00 am

darn, I thought I was going to get my first.

uga-brave

February 20th, 2010
2:00 am

never thought that was possible.

P'cola Brave

February 20th, 2010
2:01 am

I’m just ready for him to sign so we can figure out what this team will consist of.

bravesfaninNashville

February 20th, 2010
2:02 am

Atldenver

February 20th, 2010
2:05 am

Claiming “first” is for losers so I will not do so regardless if I am or not.

So tired of the Damon drama. He is a slightly above average player these days worthy of a decent one year contract with the Braves but the two year big money supposed contract offer with the Tigers is toxic.

If he was really interested in that deal, he would have jumped on it. He will sign a one year deal soon.

nolie

February 20th, 2010
2:06 am

Everybody is different. I was a catcher and had little trouble picking it up. In fact playing outfield once in a while was much more of a problem for me. I never did get the knack of knowing right where a flyball was headed. Adventurous, it sometimes was. I coulda use one of them GPS thingys at times if they had been around back then . :)

Matt_t

February 20th, 2010
2:12 am

When he didn’t take the Detroit offer right away I was hoping that meant atlanta still had a chance, the longer it drags out the better our chances.

Tom O'Hawke

February 20th, 2010
2:18 am

DOB

Thanks for the first “official” blog of Spring Training, and the 2010 baseball season. With this late (blog) arrival, I’m thinking that you really must dislike working day games.

ElBraggO

February 20th, 2010
2:35 am

It doesn’t matter if he signs with Atlanta or not.The Braves aren’t going to be able to really contend until 2011, when they get rid of the dead weight in the dugout.

shmoe

February 20th, 2010
2:42 am

DOB,

Funny you mention your colleague Bowman in that way. I’ve been reading his posts, and he was absolutely adamant about Braves not interested in Damon. Wonder how he feels…

shmoe

February 20th, 2010
2:51 am

I mean, I respect Mark Bowman, I think he’s a decent Braves journalist, but something about the way he writes just gets under my skin. Maybe it’s his overuse of the word ‘certainly’. In fact, I’m certain that’s it. He’ll often say something like this: “While I’d rather smell a stinky fart, I’d certainly continue reading Mark Bowman because he shows some semblance of the skill that is certainly required of a sports journalist.”

In other words, DOB, you’re the man. Not many can compare.

SCJames

February 20th, 2010
3:02 am

DOB or anyone other bloggers. Can anyone tell me about going to watch the Braves at Spring Training. Do you just have to pay to get into the game or do you have to pay a park fee to get into the Wide World of Sports Complex? Also, I know the Tigers plaing in Lakeland isn’t far away, is there any other stadiums within an hour worth checking out?

Jay212033

February 20th, 2010
3:03 am

DOB

Were the minor league pitchers required to report today as well?

MattyRoss

February 20th, 2010
3:14 am

A friend of a friend just named her son Townes. Gotta wonder if that kid’s destined for greatness out of the gate.

UGA75

February 20th, 2010
4:00 am

DOB
Thanks for the coverage all day long. This was a great day to be watching your blog. I wouldn’t mind Damon, but I can’t get real excited about him either. He isn’t an upgrade defensively, and who knows if he is offensively over Diaz long term. I wish we would just dump Melky and use that money for something else, even extra sunflower seed and bubble gum, or maybe Smoltzie in the BP. I just don’t see Melky as an improvement over anything.

Andrew in PA

February 20th, 2010
4:25 am

Decisions, decisions. Make one, Damon. Dammit. HaHa thats awesome Dave

nyyankeefanforever

February 20th, 2010
4:49 am

As a hardcore lifelong Yankee fan, I’m here to tell you Damon is done like dinner, and I’m getting fed up with all the ill-informed Yankee bandwagon jumpers whining and crying here and elsewhere about our Damon/Matsui geezer dump.

Braves and Tigers fans, read my lips. Bottom line: The Bombers jettisoned a cripple (Matsui) and an overrated paycheck player who throws like a girl (Damon) and traded in their bloated paychecks for a healthy young speedy All-Star stud with a bigger bat than either of them who’s all upside (Granderson), a #2 hitter whose 2009 on-base percentage was only topped by the NL and AL MVPs (Johnson) and a #4 starting pitcher who came in 4th in NL Cy Young voting last year (Vazquez), along with some very helpful support players that give Joe G and Cash lineup options and roster flexibility down the stretch.

The myth that Damon is still any kind of speedster is pure fiction perpetuated by casual fans, out of town writers who didn’t watch him play every day and Boras the Liar, his agent. Gardner had to cover left center all season for him. He only had 12 steals all last season — just two more than Melky who batted at the bottom of the order — and his infamous two-bag theft in the Series was the result of a double error; first a bad throw from the catcher and then the pitcher’s failure to cover third with the shift on. (His replacement Grandy had 30 HRS and 20 SBs in a less than friendly hitter’s park last year, btw.)

Without the sweet right-field porch in the new Yankee Stadium and Arod and Tex protecting them in the batting order, neither Johnny Spoiled Rotten nor Hideki are going to see another season in MLB after this one, let alone another post-season. And their replacements will slot into their lineup spots just fine.

For even more Yankee fun and pre-season baseball hilarity, check out the hilarious musical comedy vid “Joe’s Job – The Ballad of Terry Francona” at

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WvVZQnELQ9s

It’s a must-see for Yankee and Red Suks fans alike, as well as anyone sle who wants to see what a first-class MLB smack rivalry looks and sounds like!

Latenight Bailbond Guy

February 20th, 2010
4:54 am

Great tune today, I saw Townes and Guy Clark at a club called Stagger Lees in the late 80’s It was located on Ponce de Leon next to where the Crackers stadium was, It was a great show, Both in their primes musically. The club didn’t last very long, I believe the same people who own Blind Willie’s ran it.
As for Damon, I’m still undecided myself as to whether it would be worth it to sign him. Most of me wants to see the kid (Heyward) get a shot. Enjoy sunny Florida and keep up the good work. I enjoy the sniping back and forth of all your regulars and you keep it interesting.

MikeY

February 20th, 2010
6:55 am

Forget Damon. Sign Jonny Gomes.

David O'Brien

February 20th, 2010
7:11 am

jay212033 — No, minor league camp doesn’t open for a while yet. I’ll check on date later today….

Latenight Bailbond Guy: Townes and Guy Clark at a club on Ponce. Wow. That’s one I would’ve loved to see. I’ve got the Together at the Bluebird Cafe (Nashville) album with Earle, Townes and Guy Clark, which is a great live album.

Couch Tater

February 20th, 2010
7:18 am

Is that really a Zebra in the top photo or a bandwagon Ass wearing N.Y. pinstripes?

njbraves

February 20th, 2010
7:20 am

Braves need Damon….get it done Frank.

Jay212033

February 20th, 2010
7:21 am

Cool! Thanks Dave.

Greg Norton

February 20th, 2010
7:30 am

Forget Damon. Sign Greg Norton.

Benjamin

February 20th, 2010
7:31 am

Even IF Johnny D. plays at 80 percent of his recent production for us in left field, he’s still a significant upgrade for a season over Melky, and his arrival would also slide Cabrera into a more desired role of fourth OF due to his ability to play all three spots serviceably. In other words, I do think Damon could be an asset to the Braves.

The real monkey wrench in this whole thing, though, is the kid. Jason Heyward will deserve a place in the lineup if he tears up Spring Training, much like Tommy Hansen should’ve been on the Opening Day roster in 2009. And that complicates things, because an outfield of Diaz, McLouth, and Heyward with some combnation of a healthy Jordan Schafer and utility supreme Melky could be a particularly good one, as well.

Just my two pennies.

like someone else said

February 20th, 2010
7:32 am

No. I don’t want to see a four hopper coming into second from left field. This deal is six years too late.

Benjamin

February 20th, 2010
7:33 am

DOB, any word on Jair’s shoulder? I read yesterday where he was still complaining of tightness. Obviously the MRI is sound, but is there concern down there that this might be something that lingers into the season?

Every time I hear of young pitchers in that position, I think of one Steven Avery. And that’s not a good thing.

Runnin

February 20th, 2010
7:45 am

I wonder why McLouth didn’t opt for the laser surgery. As someone who wore contacts for years, I know what a hassle they can be, especially outside in the wind and elements.

Burdell

February 20th, 2010
8:00 am

I’ve worn contacts for decades. They’re not really that bad, especially if you only need to wear them for a few hours / day.

Geek

February 20th, 2010
8:01 am

Damon is a hired gun, such is what baseball has become. What team and city is on his paycheck hardly is an issue for him or his wife regardless of what team he signs with he will be a transient with no long term ties intended. Raising the point of his wife is quaint, but if she had any influence they would have stayed in NY. Damon is looking to cash in and cash out since it is clear that under the best of circumstances he will get a 2 year deal and that is nuts. The free agent market next year will be big and the major teams are holding back so they can afford to be in the bidding.

JD

February 20th, 2010
8:19 am

Playoffs!?!?

February 20th, 2010
8:22 am

Dave O’Brien–you are obsessed with Johnny Damon.

Runnin

February 20th, 2010
8:29 am

Burdell, did you every try and hit a 95 mph fastball wearing contacts in windy conditions and with dust flying around? How about catching a flyball at Turner Field right about dusk? Professional athletes can’t afford to be thinking about their contacts. I played golf in college and struggled with contact issues. I made do but it wasn’t an optimal situation.

kdbanks01

February 20th, 2010
8:34 am

I think Glaus is the key this year. If he can hit for power and protect Chipper a little bit, we’ll be golden. If not, then it’ll be a long year. But he’s only 33, though we seem to think of him like he’s older than Chipper. I have high hopes.

Baseball!

itcouldbeworse

February 20th, 2010
8:41 am

get damon and the whole lineup changes

Mutts

February 20th, 2010
8:45 am

No big deal if we sign or don’t sign Damon. He’s a solid offensive player and average defensively with no arm. He will not significantly help this team in 2010, nor will he hurt the Braves if he signs elsewhere.

DaveInDallas(NC)

February 20th, 2010
8:59 am

IF the Braves were to land Damon and IF they have the glut of outfielders, who would be dealt and for what? Do they try to deal for a prospect in a position where their minor league system is weak? What level a prospect would they gain for the player they dealt?

Check that Date

February 20th, 2010
9:05 am

The date on the Bobby Cox Tribute is actually Saturday, Oct. 2, not Oct. 1.

Angus

February 20th, 2010
9:11 am

It’d be a little ironic if the Braves tore it up with a bunch of former Yankees.

I’m too young for Stagger Lee’s, but did see Townes at Blind Willie’s. – just a couple of months before he died. It was equal parts sad and beautiful. Daytime show, the owner told everyone STFU or get out, dead silence, Townes would get on a roll and it was beautiful, then he’d forget the words, stop, start another song.

sidslidkid

February 20th, 2010
9:20 am

DOB, you going to ESPNWWOSFIUHDIHU this morning? Have you had a chance to talk to Diaz? I like to hear what he thinks about all Damon talks.

Kudzu

February 20th, 2010
9:20 am

I agree, “get it done” but don’t overpay…1 year…with incentives…you know…you produce you get paid. To he** with all these high dollar gurranteed contracts…Let’s change the way it’s done…

Eric In Albany N.Y.

February 20th, 2010
9:25 am

Kudzu Do you think boras is going to take a deal with the braves with incentives when he can get gaurenteed money from anouther team worth the same price?

Who thinks this is bobbys last year?
1 for yes!
2 for no!

My Vote 1

JASon

February 20th, 2010
9:28 am

Johnny Damon looks and acts goofy. I’ve always hated the guy.

Jay212033

February 20th, 2010
9:29 am

Just say NO to Damon!!!

Eric In Albany N.Y.

February 20th, 2010
9:31 am

JASon

February 20th, 2010
9:28 am
Johnny Damon looks and acts goofy. I’ve always hated the guy.

LinkReport this comment.Jay212033

February 20th, 2010
9:29 am
Just say NO to Damon!!!

I Third That!

Jay212033

February 20th, 2010
9:31 am

And YES to Salcedo!!!

Eric In Albany N.Y.

February 20th, 2010
9:32 am

actually i only hated johnny when he shaved and went to the bronx!

David O'Brien

February 20th, 2010
9:39 am

Beautiful day here at the ‘yard, folks. And the boys are all here, including D. Lowe, who has turned the page on this winter’s doings. Same Lowe, no sour attitude from what I could tell….

David O'Brien

February 20th, 2010
9:43 am

18-year-old shortstop prospect Edward Salcedo is almost certainly going to be a Brave. The only thing that’s holding up a deal is the physical, and that could happen real soon. Braves had some problems with paperwork and getting him over here for the physical, but sounds like they’re getting that ironed out. Other teams have already tried to swoop in and get him, but he and Braves scout have a good bond and it appears he’s committed to signing with Braves.

jeffrey d

February 20th, 2010
9:43 am

Our one-time reminder: Braves single-game tickets will go on sale Wednesday, including the April 5 opening day game against the Chicago Cubs

ahhhh….but payday is Friday. Anybody know if it should sell out by then since it’s opening day?

jeffrey d

February 20th, 2010
9:44 am

Nevermind…I know it won’t sell out. I forgot who we were dealing with

tlb

February 20th, 2010
9:45 am

if we offered johnny damon 4.5 mil because that is what we have left to spend why not trade melky caberra and his waste of 3.3mil to make the offer more in the 6-7 mil dollar range this would save us about 2million if we need to make any move for a mid season player such as john smoltz, if we had chipper call him and chipper is serious about wanting a world series at this point in his carrer why cant he spare 2mil or 3mil of his 15mil salary to help us out after his performance last year, This is also where the soito signing looks stupid aswell at 3mil… who was going to offer that amount to a 40yr old set up man? medlen could have pitched the 7th moylan the 8th wagner the 9th and cheaper bullpen acqusition could have been made!

Braves Fan No More

February 20th, 2010
9:48 am

Whether they get Damon or not, they aren’t going to be competitive until they have a real owner, some accountability thereby and until Bobby Cox is gone. I was a fan since the day they came to Atlanta, but left them last year after seeing Cox give away game after game.

David O'Brien

February 20th, 2010
9:49 am

Benjamin, glad you asked about Jurrjens.

I saw the same report that you saw and was surprised to read him say he might be out 1-2 weeks, since it contradicted what he and the doc said just two days earlier.

So I talked to him this morning. And again, he told me he doesn’t think he’ll be behind much, if any at all. The timetable that head trainer Jeff Porter gave him yesterday is tentatively four more days of rest from yesterday, so he could be throwing again as soon as Tuesday.

If that’s the case, that probably wouldn’t have any effect other than perhaps moving him to the back of the rotation for the first turn when spring games start in two weeks. And barring any further setbacks, there’s no reason it should affect his readiness for the start of the season.

In answer to the question you and others might have, no he’s not had any setback or changes in the prognosis since the MRI came back clean. He said it feels a little tight when he does his stretching, that’s all. Until he throws again, really won’t be any more update on his condition, I’d imagine.

jeffrey d

February 20th, 2010
9:53 am

Braves Fan No More –

Whether they get Damon or not, they aren’t going to be competitive until they have a real owner

As long as Liberty is dishing out $95 million a year, I’m fine with ownership (especially considering our attendance). But some people want to use ownership as a scapegoat.

I was a fan since the day they came to Atlanta, but left them last year after seeing Cox give away game after game.

Can’t argue with Cox giving away games. But you were a fan for 19 years, and suddenly “left” the team because of Greg Norton?

CB

February 20th, 2010
9:53 am

DOB, any inkling of how much the signing of Salcedo will cost?

oasisbraves

February 20th, 2010
9:54 am

I would think Damon would also want to take into account that he could possibly get deeper into the playoffs with Atlanta, because the Yanks would most definitely defeat DET and CHI…..same could be said in the NL Philly or STL could possibly def ATL, but Yanks are a powerhouse that im sorry folk…just cant be beat. He has a better chance in ATL.

P'cola Brave

February 20th, 2010
9:54 am

I hate seeing all these former Braves fan come in and try to bash the team because your panties are in a wad. To say I’m not going to be a fan until Bobby is gone or a new owner is in charge is ridiculous. You were never a fan if this is what turned you away. Do us all a favor and stay away from the game.

P'cola Brave

February 20th, 2010
9:56 am

CB

I saw yesterday that the Salcedo signing will be around 2 mil.

Jay212033

February 20th, 2010
9:57 am

Great news about Salcedo! I hope he starts in Rome so i’ll get a chance to see him play but he’l probably start in the GCL or Danville more than likely.

Braves_Fan_RSD

February 20th, 2010
9:57 am

The White Sox have pulled their offer for Johnny Damon, Bruce Levine of ESPNChicago.com reports, which is interesting because just a few days ago, they thought they were the frontrunners.

So now, Damon may end up settling for a one-year deal for less than $4 million from the Braves, MLB.com reports. Or he could go to Detroit, but FoxSports.com’s Ken Rosenthal reported Wednesday that Damon doesn’t want to play in Detroit.

If Damon signed with Atlanta, the plan would be to use him in the leadoff spot and in left field, alongside Nate McClouth and rookie Jason Heyward. This would get rid of a potential Matt Diaz/Melky Cabrera platoon, but we’re guessing the Braves don’t mind one bit.

ESPN INsider

http://insider.espn.go.com/mlb/features/rumors

Braves Fan No More

February 20th, 2010
9:58 am

One more thing. Damon is the ultimate turncoat. Anyone who would go from the Red Sox to the Yankees voluntarily (not through being traded), has no loyalty in him at all. He’s a total whore, only playing for the money; screw teammates, screw the fans, screw team loyalty. The Braves would be better off without him. But then that’s exactly why I believe they’ll probably end up with him. They have been self-destructing for the past few years, by making stupid personnel moves. He’ll probably be the latest.

Eric In Albany N.Y.

February 20th, 2010
9:59 am

A Little Something I Wrote!!! Im sure some of you can relate!

Another year ends with long winter cold.
Shocking the young and killing the old.
Tears have been shed and a lot has been lost.
There’s just enough time for dreams to be tossed.

We all tell ourselves the hurting must stop;
Hoping one day, we’ll end up on top.
There’s always a dream that comes really close,
But most of the time it ends up a ghost.

Some know the drill, they have been there for years.
For others its new, with double the tears.
Sometimes we’re left with torn apart hearts,
As everyone waits till another one starts.

Seems like the mountain is so hard to climb;
A peace of my heart is taken each time.
No one quite gets how the pain is the same,
It’s hard to take in, that its only a game.



,,,And i will just say this… If youre jumping ship after 19 yrs because of ownership and the coaching staff and a utility man who isnt even on the team anymore… i doubt you were ever really a true fan

Braveheart

February 20th, 2010
10:00 am

Yes, please make it end. After watching Tiger Woods in that hostage video yesterday, I thought for sure the authorities would have swooped in and freed him by now.

GTSteve

February 20th, 2010
10:00 am

Baseball is back and spring is in the air…..

CB

February 20th, 2010
10:03 am

P’cola,thanks.

Braves Fan No More

February 20th, 2010
10:04 am

P’cola Brave,

Your ignorance is evidenced by your continual loyalty to a team whose ownership doesn’t care one bit about winning. Perhaps you are the one who should stay away from the game.

UKUGA/brent a.

February 20th, 2010
10:06 am

By the time Damon signs, Spring Training may be over, and where a team trains may be irrelevant.

SoWeGa Fanatic

February 20th, 2010
10:07 am

DOB, who’s the scout that should get an attaboy for Salcedo?

Eric In Albany N.Y.

February 20th, 2010
10:07 am

Braves Fan No More Tell me what in this country isnt taken over by corporate america! sports has been this way for a while now! get used to it

P'cola Brave

February 20th, 2010
10:07 am

BFNM

My loyalty is to the team regardless of owner and manager. The whole point of being a fan is to support the team through the ups and downs. Not bounce around because your team has fallen out of contention and you can’t deal with it. Why don’t you go be a Yankee fan and make us all happy.

Whatever

February 20th, 2010
10:09 am

So what if Chipper called the dude? It’s laughable to think that a phone call from Chipper would make a guy pass on several million to sign with the Braves. That’s just plain stupid! Oh wow, I should sign with the Braves b/c Chipper wants me to…uh, no.

SoWeGa Fanatic

February 20th, 2010
10:09 am

Braves Fan No More

February 20th, 2010
10:04 am
P’cola Brave,

Your ignorance is evidenced by your continual loyalty to a team whose ownership doesn’t care one bit about winning.

And yours is evidenced by your spending time on a blog of a team you admittedly care nothing for, Stupid.

SoWeGa Fanatic

February 20th, 2010
10:10 am

Whatever, I doubt the difference will be several million.

SoWeGa Fanatic

February 20th, 2010
10:12 am

Beautiful day! Going to work in the yard. Wish me luck, Braves Fans…piss on the rest of you.

Horner 82

February 20th, 2010
10:14 am

Fan no more,
why are you posting if you’re really a fan no more? Fan since 1966, all the lean years of the 70’s and mid/late 80’s didn’t bother you as much as last year’s team that made a late push for contention? After watching Gene Garber give away game after game? Lonnie Smith not scoring the World Series winning run? Agonizing years coming so close in the playoffs? Last year drove you away (but not really away, posting on a Braves blog on the first weekend of spring training). Come on.

Eric In Albany N.Y.

February 20th, 2010
10:17 am

Braves Fan No More you need to change your name to fair weather braves fan who is now a phillies fan

Benjamin

February 20th, 2010
10:18 am

Thank you for the response re: Jair, DOB. Enjoy your day at the park.

Brave P

February 20th, 2010
10:18 am

The braves need to break the bank and give Damon whatever he wants. His bat will juice up the lineup. Pay him $10 mil per year if needed—get it done ASAP!

Jack Fate

February 20th, 2010
10:20 am

Chipper said in a radio interview that he did call Johnny Damon, but never actually spoke with him. Perhaps Chipper reaching out is a little over-rated.

If you haven’t heard the interview, it is pretty good. From 790. http://www.790thezone.com/instantreplay/Episodes.aspx?PID=1345

Scott G

February 20th, 2010
10:20 am

DOB, you said the Bobby Cox tribute night will be Saturday, October 1. But Oct. 1 is a Friday. Does that mean the night is actually the 1st (Friday) or the 2nd (Saturday)?

jeffrey d

February 20th, 2010
10:28 am

That’s just plain stupid! Oh wow, I should sign with the Braves b/c Chipper wants me to…uh, no Whatever

I’m pretty sure the lack of interest is mutual.

Nobody said that the Chipper call was going to make the deal, but it helps. It shows that you genuinely want this guy on your team. The Braves don’t have $14 million to throw at him, so I think Chipper calling him was a nice touch.

Check the Date

February 20th, 2010
10:29 am

@Scott G: It’s October 2nd. First press release got the date wrong.

Efrim

February 20th, 2010
10:36 am

Good to hear about Salcedo. 6′3” 190 lbs at 18 years old. Kid could be Chipper’s replacement at third base one day…..of course that’s quite far off.

Braves Fan No More

February 20th, 2010
10:36 am

I return to these fan blog pages because it allows me to see where I came from. I once blindly followed the Braves. However, through the blundering of Bobby Cox last year and his subsequent complete lack of accountability, I was forced to face the truth that I had long suspected, but willingly ignored. The Braves ownership does not care if the team wins or loses. It can be profitable either way and even if it’s not profitable, it’s still a great tax write-off. This thing (major league baseball) is a business- period. It consists of cold blooded businessmen, whose only goal is making a profit. No loyalty there. It consists of mercenary players like Johnny Damon, who would spit on the Redsox and the city of Boston and voluntarily and happily play for their arch rival, for a few dollars more. No loyalty there either. So why should fans be loyal to something like that? The wonderful game has been coopted by greed.

CB

February 20th, 2010
10:39 am

I was once coopted by greed- but I got over it.

toga party

February 20th, 2010
10:40 am

Thanks for the new blog and the early updates DOB.

I’m really excited for spring training this year. I think the first couple weeks will tell us an awful lot.

P'cola Brave

February 20th, 2010
10:42 am

Anymore early position players today DOB?

RHR

February 20th, 2010
10:42 am

Jamie McCourt asked for 1 million a month in support! Hahahahahahaha I would love to see the judge’s face. I don’t care if you are the ex-wife of Jesus Christ, you ain’t getting a million a month.

N8

February 20th, 2010
10:43 am

“Your ignorance is evidenced by your continual loyalty to a team whose ownership doesn’t care one bit about winning.” BFNM

What, you never had a crush on or dated a girl who’s parents didn’t care about her having a good time or spending it with friends?

Oh wait. I should have probably just stopped after “you never had a crush or dated a girl….”.

But seriously. I root for the team. Period. Does it suck that Ted (or one person like Mark Cuban or Art Blank) doesn’t own the team? Yeah, a little bit. It’s nice to have an owner who not only has money to dump on the team, but is a fan as well.

But I live thousands of miles away from Atlanta, and don’t dump a bunch of money on jerseys and what not. I buy my Extra Innings or mlb-tv package (which goes to ALL of MLB not just the Braves). So, it’s still very practical to ROOT FOR the team you’ve always loved, without showing support for the ownership group. If you wanna boycott going to any games or purchasing merchandise in order to protest Liberty Media, I’m cool with that. But why should the players lose a fan because of YOU not liking ownership?

That my friend, is how you’ve made YOUR ignorance evident.

N8

February 20th, 2010
10:46 am

RHR, I bet if Scott Boras was here lawyer, by dragging it out another month or two, he could get the judge to give her 2 million a month, buy claiming there is another judge in Detroit willing to rule in her favor for 3 million per month!

UKUGA/brent a.

February 20th, 2010
10:46 am

Okay, the picture of TW and his mother on the FP of ESPN.com right now is just about priceless.

Looks like a pic from dancing with the stars, family edition . . .

http://espn.go.com/

N8

February 20th, 2010
10:48 am

Efrim, initially I thought the same thing about Salcedo and being Chipper’s replacement. But somebody mentioned yesterday that about the time he’ll likely be ready, the odds are better that he might be Escobar’s replacement if Escobar doesn’t get locked up long term in between now and then.

CB

February 20th, 2010
10:53 am

N8, you have to bring sadness to good news -(

CB

February 20th, 2010
10:54 am

P'cola Brave

February 20th, 2010
10:54 am

If Escobar has another big year this year we may want to try and lock him up so we don’t have to go year to year with him. I think the guy will eventually be one of the best players in the league. If he continues to improve this year it may be in our best interest to lock him up.

thickfreakness

February 20th, 2010
10:56 am

Braves Fan No More-
I’m sure it’s as you say. Liberty Media wants to make one of its’ assets worthless so they can lose money. It’s just that I don’t see this as good business sense. Elaborate for the blog so we can all follow your logic.

Braveheart

February 20th, 2010
10:58 am

Any word yet from Cosmo Damon?

thickfreakness

February 20th, 2010
10:58 am

P’cola Brave-
Escobar is the best SS in tne NL already. Yes, he will be better than Hanley this year, He’s better than Rollins and the injury in NY.

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