-Though I respect Mr. Pinto's opinions, here's my thoughts on Damon (as left in Musings' comments section): Posted by: Baseball Banter at November 2, 2005 08:16 PM
"Excuse me but...Johnny Damon is not as "banged up" as you assume.
He actually had more at bats in 2005 than he did in 2004 & 2003, while playing in only 2 & 5 less games.
You also state that Damon is on the "downside of his career" as he turns 32 in 3 days?
Well, Mr. Pinto, Damon batted .317 with 197 hits in 2005 & .304 with 189 hits in 2004.
In addition, 2005 & 2004 he had an OPS of 800plus in consecutive seasons for the first time since the 1999 & 2000 campaigns.
Other than the time he hit .327 with 214 hits & an OPS of .877 in 2000, those are his highest single season totals since.
Maybe he did "peak" in 1999 & 2000, but I'll take the year he had last year ANY YEAR regardless if half of his games are played at hitters-friendly Fenway Park.
Damon might be injury-prone due to his all out style of play, however he has proved year in & year out that he has no problem performing while playing "banged up" averaging 150 games a season.
If anything Johnny Damon could be on the RISE once again, and is worthy of at least a 3 or 4 year deal.
BEIJING 2008 SUMMER OLYMPIC BASEBALL REPORT Angels prospects Jered Weaver, Jeff Mathis, Howie Kendrick and Brandon Wood were among 24 minor leaguers picked Thursday for the U.S. Olympic baseball team
The club, managed by Davey Johnson, will compete in qualifiers this month for the 2008 Olympics.
Only players not on 25-man rosters as of Aug. 31 were eligible for the games, to be played at the spring training ballparks of the Chicago Cubs, Milwaukee Brewers and Oakland Athletics in Phoenix and Mesa, Ariz.
The United States plays Canada (Nov. 15 at Maryvale), Mexico (Nov. 16 at Phoenix Municipal), Nicaragua (Nov. 17 at Maryvale), Panama (Nov. 18 at HoHoKam) and Canada (Nov. 19 at Maryvale)
The top four teams advance to the Americas Olympic qualifying tournament at Havana in August 2006, where they will be joined by the top four qualifiers from both the Caribbean and South American regions. The top two nations in that tournament advance to the 2008 Olympics, and the third- and fourth-place teams go to a secondary qualifying event to be held in 2007.
The United States won the gold medal at the 2000 Sydney Games but was eliminated by Mexico in qualifying for the 2004 Athens Olympics. The IOC has voted to drop baseball following the 2008 Beijing Games, but the International Baseball Federation is pushing for a new vote next year.
The Full Roster
Pitchers: Stephen Andrade, rhp (Toronto); Jonah Bayliss, rhp (Kansas City); Dave Haehnel, lhp (Baltimore); Chris Lambert, rhp (St. Louis); Jim Miller, rhp (Colorado); Bill Murphy, lhp (Arizona); Clint Nageotte, rhp (Seattle); Brian Sanches, rhp (Philadelphia); Matt Smith, lhp (New York Yankees); Nick Ungs, rhp (Florida); Jered Weaver, rhp (Los Angeles Angels); Stephen White, rhp (New York Yankees).
Catchers: Jeff Mathis (Los Angeles Angels); Jarrod Saltalamacchia (Atlanta).
Infielders: Travis Hanson (St. Louis); Brendan Harris (Washington); Howie Kendrick (Los Angeles Angels), Bryan LaHair (Seattle); Ryan Shealy (Colorado); Brandon Wood (Los Angeles Angels)
Outfielders: Billy Butler (Kansas City); Lastings Milledge (New York Mets); Brad Snyder (Cleveland); Shane Victorino (Philadelphia).