December 8, 2009

Damon deal: 2YR / $20MM?

Jon Heyman reported yesterday that the Yankees are “expecting to offer about $20 million over two years” to keep Johnny Damon for his fifth season in pinstripes.

I have no problems with that price tag. Some may think it is too expensive for a 36-year-old, but when you look at the numbers, they aren’t declining. In fact, they have remained quite steady in his four years as a Yank.

Compared to 2008, he had a slight drop off in BA (.303 to .282), but at the new stadium, he saw his home run total climb from 17 to 24. He also reached 100 runs in a season for the 10th time in his career.

Another reason for the high price tag could be his durability. He has played in over 140 games in each of his last 14 seasons.

Some may say his arm in left hurts the overall outfield defense too much. I would respond with he still chases down flies with the best of them and still has good speed on the base paths.

The only reason his stolen base count dropped from 29 to 12 in the last two years is because he hit second, not leadoff, in 2009. Hence, Derek Jeter’s stolen bases went up for the first time in five years.

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