Media Notes on Damon's Departure

The Johnny Damon signing by the New York Yankees didn't only catch the Red Sox front office by surprise. Here was yesterday's prescient headline in the New York Times sports section, never one of the paper's strong points and an area in which they get thrashed by the tabloids:

Yankees Appear Unlikely to Make a Major Move

The Boston Metro commuter freebie tabloid had a split personality on the big trade. A page one teaser this morning declared: Yankees, Damon reach late deal. But the paper's sports section featured a subhed quoting the Red Sox general managers saying: Negotiations with Damon 'progressing well.'

Kudos to the Herald for its clever front page teaser Johnny B. Gone

Meanwhile, on WEEI, the long arduous process of diminishing Damon's talents and achievements here is underway. One caller already sagely noted that Tony Graffanino is a better on-base man than Damon. Others have predicted, of course, that Damon will break down physically in New York. We'll see if a station that has a sterling record of firmly siding with Sox management in practically every decision continues that not-so-proud tradition. (On the morning show, Steve Buckley and Jon Meterparel were basically lauding the Sox fiscal discipline while Larry Johnson seemed genuinely upset over the Damon exit.)

(As a Yankee fan, I'm happy but not ecstatic. Yes, Damon is a serious upgrade over Bubba Crosby. But I do worry about runners merrily scooting around the bases given his weak arm and the vast expanse that is center field in Yankee Stadium. )
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