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I heard an interview with Bronson Arroyo, Damon's best friend on the Sox, on the radio Friday morning. He basically pointed a finger at the team's management for "blowing their chance" as re-signing Damon. He says it definitely was NOT just about the money....what it WAS about was Boston's seeming lack of interest in JD. He said Johnny warned him several days before signing with NY that he was heavily leaning that way because the Yankees were much more interested in dealing with him. How exactly does this make Damon "shallow"???? Would he be considered any less shallow had he signed with, let's say, the

Royals? (where he played previously)

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Boston is in a tough spot right now after:

A) Losing their GM (Epstein resigning)

B) Trading their starting SS (Renteria), without one to replace him.

C) Losing Damon to their fiercest rival.

D) Having Manny not sure if he wants to play there for $18M per.

They just named "co-GM's" and they seem like they are really in state of disarray, while the Jays and O's are making big money moves from behind.

The only thing I question about Damon moving to the Yanks is how did they get him for only three or four years (not sure which)? I had heard alot of teams were turned off by his request for a seven year deal, not interested in a 39 year old Johnny in the seventh year of the deal. That shorter contract makes me think there might be some maliciousness there, in moving to the rival.

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I would say it might be maliciousness if Damon agreed to move to NY for less money than the Red Sox offered him (like Pettite did in '04 signing with Houston for considerably less than the Yankees offered him). I believe Boston was offering him somewhere around $45M for 4 years. Nobody in MLB was willing to talk 7 years with his agent.

If there are any hard feelings, though, I think it's safe to assume that Boston management caused them....even if they might have resulted from from the chaotic situation there. Per JD, the Red Sox were openly discussing (via the Boston press) various options for CF for next year....almost as if they really didn't care about Damon's feelings. Boston wasn't his first ML club, and he's a veteran, so he clearly knows that MLB is first and foremost a business, NOT a fraternity or club or close-knit family...in spite of what some Red Sox fans desperately want to believe or cling to. The cold hard fact that buying Schilling is what put them over the top in '04, NOT some sort of inherent goodness from being in Boston (or being the "cursed" Red Sox) should have sunk in by now.....

What it's starting to look like to me is that Boston seems content having finally captured that one flag in '04. They let Pedro and Lowe walk last year, Mueller and Damon are gone, and several others as well. It almost seems like an attitude of "well. we won in '04, time to tighten our belts again..."

My guess is - they'll still be very competitive with NY in '06, with ot without Damon.

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