Johnny Damon: Did You Notice What Shane Victorino Did This Week?

Perry ArnoldSenior Analyst IJanuary 23, 2010

NEW YORK - OCTOBER 29:  Shane Victorino #8 of the Philadelphia Phillies hits an RBI against the New York Yankees  in Game Two of the 2009 MLB World Series at Yankee Stadium on October 29, 2009 in the Bronx borough of New York City.  (Photo by Jed Jacobsohn/Getty Images)
Jed Jacobsohn/Getty Images

Johnny Damon, it is time you woke up and smelled the coffee.

Scott Boras, it is time you realized that your time fooling every General Manager in baseball is over.

Take a look at what happened this week. Phillies center fielder, Shane Victorino, just re-upped with the Phils for three years at just over $7 million per year.

Johnny, are you paying attention?

The Yankees just got through paying you $13 million dollars per year. Were you worth it?

When you came to the Yankees in 2005, an argument could have been made that you were worth that money.

That was a time of crazy money, and a good economy in general, and the Yankees were used to shelling out such insane sums for players who would not produce in the future.

But now, the market is down, the economy generally is in shambles, and suddenly baseball executives have awakened.

Before, a player like Damon could have expected to be paid for what he had done in the past. That is the only possible reason anyone would pay Johnny Damon what he is apparently asking, that is to pay him for past performance.

And that is not going to happen anymore. At this point, General Managers understand that you have to pay a player for what he will do for you in the future and not what he has done in the past.

Damon is a very old 36 and has had various injury problems in the past three years. He can't run as he once did. He can't throw at all anymore, and all his offensive production numbers are down from his prime years.

Victorino, on the other hand, just turned 29. He is a very good defensive outfielder, and he produces on offense.

In the past two seasons he has shown he will get on base, steal some bases, and ignite his team. This player, on a great team with a very bright future, has signed for $7 million per year.

What does Johnny Damon think he is really worth?

What does Scott Boras think his broken down outfielder is worth?

Everyone must recognize that there are only a few teams who will take Damon under any circumstances. The best bets would seem to be a team who wants to consider an unconventional DH.

If an American League team wanted to consider Damon as a DH who is going to hit at best 20 home runs, drive in 85 runs, and score 90, then maybe such a team will look at Damon as having some value.

That is about what the Yankees got when they signed Nick Johnson to be their DH for 2010. But they will not pay Johnson anything close to what Damon is apparently demanding.

You also have to consider that Damon as an unconventional DH will not steal many bases.  He could fill in if necessary in left field. But that is the only position you would ever want to consider him for, and you have to realize that he could only do that from time to time.

No real baseball observer could possible consider Damon adequate on defense any more.

So where does Damon think the money will come from? Hard to tell from here when someone such as Victorino just signed for what he did.

Philadelphia just finished a second season in which they went to the World Series. They are a team with great strengths, and they are better now than when the Yankees beat them in November.

The Phillies have money and they have spent it wisely. They did so again with Victorino.

Damon and Boras have to pay attention to this kind of move.

Damon, wake up.

What teams want you?

What are you really worth?

Compared to Shane Victorino when the season starts in April, you aren't worth very much.