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Friday, July 25, 2014

SoE: AN IDIOT IN EXILE

Johnny Damon was a major league baseball player for 18 years. He won a World Series with the Red Sox in 2004 and another one with the Yankees in 2009, which is why he once said, “Being a baseball player is so great.” He said the game “was fun,” and winning championships was even more “fun.” He learned how to have “fun” with the A’s and then taught his teammates with the Red Sox and Yankees how to have “fun.” His concept of “fun” was mostly that of a young boy. “I could buy different toys,” he said. “Jet Skis, boats, motorcycles, all the stuff that baseball affords you the privilege to buy.” His first wife, Angie Vannice, explained that her husband “plays better when he’s buying things. He likes to shop more than anybody.”

The Peter Pan of baseball, it would seem….

The Non-Catching Molina (sjs1959) Posted: July 25, 2014 at 11:27 AM | 8 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: athletics, johnny damon, red sox, retiree, royals, yankees

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   1. Jose Can Still Seabiscuit Posted: July 25, 2014 at 05:06 PM (#4757762)
I had heard about this article, it is every bit as interesting as I had heard it was. I suspect Damon's difficulties with life outside of the game are the norm.

And apparently the writer is a Game of Thrones fan.
   2. Non-Youkilidian Geometry Posted: July 25, 2014 at 07:18 PM (#4757837)
In early March, I met Johnny Damon for breakfast at an IHOP near Universal Studios in Orlando, Fla., where Johnny has lived most of his life.

Damon has apparently lived at Universal Studios most of his life. Or possibly in an IHOP. Who knew?
   3. Zach Posted: July 25, 2014 at 07:52 PM (#4757859)
As far as ex-ballplayer stories go, this is pretty tame. Damon is bored and restless, and keeps hoping a team will call. He isn't broke, suicidal, violent, or addicted to anything. Here's hoping he can keep it up.
   4. The Yankee Clapper Posted: July 25, 2014 at 08:24 PM (#4757879)
Once Damon was divorced and engaged to marry Mangan, she got into a verbal catfight with Shonda Schilling, wife of Damon's teammate Curt Schilling. It seemed that Mangan had taunted Shonda by flashing an eight-carat diamond engagement ring in her face. Asked about the incident, Damon said that "Shonda was not a very nice lady," and if you were married to Curt, "you wouldn't be, either."

Should be fun when they get together for reunions.
   5. Der-K and the statistical werewolves. Posted: July 26, 2014 at 12:09 PM (#4758026)
More fine work by Pat Jordan - worth a read.
   6. BDC Posted: July 26, 2014 at 04:05 PM (#4758145)
SO much better than a centaur:

a painting that mimicked Leonardo da Vinci's "Last Supper" -- Damon takes the part of Christ, and his Red Sox teammates are the 12 disciples


Most similar batting careers to Johnny Damon's, presumably ultimate edition:

Player            dWAR Rbaser    PA OPSWAR/pos    G         Pos
Ivan Rodriguez    28.7   
-2.3 10270  106    68.4 2543     *2H/D34
Buddy Bell        23.0  
-17.3 10009  109    66.1 2405 *5/98H6D374
Frankie Frisch    21.6   29.3 10099  110    70.4 2311      
*45/6H
Graig Nettles     20.9   
-3.4 10228  110    68.0 2700  *5H/739D68
Steve Finley       2.8   28.9 10460  104    44.0 2583    
*89H/7D1
Max Carey         
-0.1   88.0 10769  108    54.2 2476      *879/H
Johnny Damon      
-3.1   76.5 10917  104    56.0 2490    *87D9H/3
Vada Pinson       
-5.8   28.0 10402  111    54.1 2470    *897H/3D
Bill Buckner     
-12.2   -7.9 10037  100    14.8 2517      *37H9D 


That's kind of a confused boundary between the HOF and the HOVG. Basically, an elite defender who hits at that level for that long is a HOFer; but: Max Carey had a better defensive reputation than WAR estimates; Buddy Bell's wasn't quite as good. And then again, Graig Nettles had a great defensive reputation and is on the outside of the HOF, though the HOM in/out line is precisely between him and Bell. Meanwhile, both the press and his managers thought that Steve Finley was much better defensively than WAR does.

Jordan's article quotes Damon stressing his consistency and durability, and the man has a point. He was a fine player for a long, long time.
   7. Crispix reaches boiling point with lackluster play Posted: July 26, 2014 at 05:34 PM (#4758177)
Great piece!

It confused Damon, embittering him. The Yankees signed Nick Johnson, who had a reputation for always being hurt, and not Damon, who always played hurt. "And then of course, Johnson got hurt," Damon said. "I woulda been perfect for Tampa, too. I played for the Rays in 2011, and it was fun. Guys kicked a soccer ball in the clubhouse and did cartwheels. On road trips, I cut the sleeves of my shirt to show my guns. But then the Rays messed up and signed Luke Scott instead of me." I asked him who Luke Scott was. "Exactly! Baltimore released him. He's a guy who hits a few home runs when they don't count. I could still play 120 games. Maybe not nine innings, but I could gas it up for six innings and be as good as anybody."
   8. Dock Ellis on Acid Posted: July 26, 2014 at 05:35 PM (#4758178)
Why doesn't Johnny Damon just go to Japan? He'd get a million or two a year and they would treat him like the rock star he thinks he is.

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