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January 22, 2011

Tampa Bay Enlists Damon and Ramirez

Last month, stories started circulating that Johnny Damon was looking to play closer to his Orlando home and sign with the Tampa Bay Rays.

Also part of that story...Gary Sheffield.

Well, here we are, a month later, and the Damon story has come to a close.  According to numerous sources, the 37-year-old outfielder has agreed to a $5.25 million dollar deal (plus incentives) to suit up for the Rays this upcoming season.

And while the Sheffield part of the afore mentioned story didn't pan out...the "Damon to the Rays" headline doesn't end there.

Joining Damon in Tampa Bay...his former Boston Red Sox teammate Manny Ramirez.

That's right.  The Rays, who have been losing players left and right this offseason, opened up the checkbook and inked both Damon and Ramirez.

There's a zillion punchlines to be made here...but I think Jonah Keri summed it up best.

Throw in Kevin Millar, Dave Roberts, and Pedro's little person, and les jeux d'idiots sont fait.

Last season with the Detroit Tigers, Damon hit .271 in 145 games. For his career, he is a .287 hitter and is sixth among active players with 2571 hits...two behind Ramirez and his 2573.

And speaking of Damon's teammate with the 2004 World Champion BoSox...he hit .298 with nine home runs in just 90 games with the Los Angeles Dodgers and Chicago White Sox.  With 555 home runs, the 12 time All-Star is third (behind only Alex Rodriguez and Jim Thome) among active players.

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