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Damon buys ad to thank Boston


NIGHT STALKER

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By PETER ABRAHAM AND BRIAN HEYMAN

pabraham@thejournalnews.com

THE JOURNAL NEWS

(Original publication: February 9, 2006)

Johnny Damon wondered aloud last week what kind of reception he would get from the fans when the Yankees play the Red Sox at Fenway Park on May 1.

Perhaps it won't be as bad as you might think.

Damon took out a full-page advertisement in the Boston Globe sports section yesterday to pay tribute to Red Sox nation.

"Many thanks to the great fans of New England and the city of Boston," it read. "It was a privilege and an honor."

The display included a photo of Damon in a Boston uniform and his signature. Damon left the Red Sox in December to sign a four-year, $52 million deal with the rival Yankees.

Pignatano headliner at auction: Joe Pignatano collected a lot of memorabilia over his years in baseball. But like several ex-big-leaguers or their descendants these days, the 76-year-old former Dodgers and Mets catcher and ex-Mets coach has decided to part with many pieces in his collection via auction.

So his 1957 Brooklyn Dodgers warm-up jacket (valued at $2,000-$3,000), 1959 L.A. Dodgers road World Series uniform ($5,000-$7,500), 1960s Yogi Berra game-used Yankees catcher's mitt ($15,000-$20,000), and 1973 Willie Mays home Mets uniform pants ($1,500-$2,500) will be among the items up for bidding on Feb. 25. That's the second and final day of a sports memorabilia and card event run by Hunt Auctions at the Inn at Chester Springs in Exton, Pa., outside Philadelphia.

There will be more than 1,200 pieces available in all from several sources, including a 1911 T-205 baseball tobacco card set estimated to be worth $25,000-$35,000, a ball autographed by Babe Ruth and Lou Gehrig ($20,000-$30,000), a Ruth bat ($15,000-$20,000) and a Shoeless Joe Jackson bat from his early '20s barnstorming days ($10,000-$15,000).

There are many items in the Pignatano collection valued in the three-figure range, and the same goes for many items from the other sources, including player jerseys and autographed balls, bats, caps, photos and cards. There's a signed Derek Jeter cap, for instance, that's estimated to be worth $500-$750.

Seats from six stadiums are available, including one from the pre-renovated Yankee Stadium ($2,000-$3,000) and a similarly valued one from the Polo Grounds, plus a vintage turnstile from Ebbets Field ($1,000-$1,500).

Bids can also be made by phone, fax or online prior to the live auction, which begins at 5 p.m. on Feb. 24 and 10 a.m. on Feb. 25. More information is available at www.huntauctions.com.

Mendoza to pitch in WBC: Ramiro Mendoza says he's in for the World Baseball Classic next month. The Yankees' right-hander threw 30 pitches during a pre-spring-training workout at the team's minor-league complex in Tampa, Fla., yesterday and then said he plans on pitching for Panama in the tournament.

"No problems ... I'm fine," Mendoza said. "All my pitches are good."

Mendoza underwent shoulder surgery in January 2005 and didn't make it back to the majors with the Yankees until September, throwing just an inning. But he did pitch winter-league ball in Venezuela.

"It really helped me," he said. "I feel better than last year."

Meanwhile, right-hander Tanyon Sturtze tossed a ball 30 times from 60 feet in the outfield on the first day of his throwing program. He suffered from a tired shoulder during last season and worked on building it up during the offseason in New York. The reliever says to count him in for Opening Day.

"My shoulder feels great ... it's strong," Sturtze said. "I haven't had the opportunity to throw as much as I have in the past staying in New York. We're taking it slow."

More Yankees: Yankees right-hander Chien-Ming Wang is wavering on his initial commitment to pitch for Taiwan in the WBC. ... The Yankees haven't gone to arbitration with a player in six years. But they have a hearing scheduled with right-hander Shawn Chacon on Monday. The Yankees have offered $3.1 million, only $1.05 million less than than what Chacon is seeking. Still, no agreement has been reached.

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Nice move by Damon, kind of reminds me when Starks left the Knicks and posted an ad or Alfonso with the Mets.

Please Wang do not play!!!

Damon will still get booed, though not nearly as bad as Jeter or A-Rod.

P.S. I hope the Yankees pressure Wang to not pitch in the WBC. He missed considerable time with shoulder issues last year, and there is no reason to make him pitch more in March then normal.

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In my opinion, it is still too little too late. Damon should not and will not be forgiven for his treachery. If he had taken out the ad within 2 weeks of signing with the Yankees, it would have meant more. Two months later and a week before ST? Just go away Johnny and enjoy your extra 3 million a year with your stripper wife.

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In my opinion, it is still too little too late. Damon should not and will not be forgiven for his treachery. If he had taken out the ad within 2 weeks of signing with the Yankees, it would have meant more. Two months later and a week before ST? Just go away Johnny and enjoy your extra 3 million a year with your stripper wife.

True.

First, Drew did it originally after his trade to Buffalo. Granted, it did not take him two months, so Damon's gesture kind of rings hollow.

mbn - I would not be surprised if Damon gets louder boos.

Jeter has always been a Yankee and A-Rod never suited up for the Sox, so the animosity is not as deep or is there betrayal that some will feel.

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True.

First, Drew did it originally after his trade to Buffalo. Granted, it did not take him two months, so Damon's gesture kind of rings hollow.

mbn - I would not be surprised if Damon gets louder boos.

Jeter has always been a Yankee and A-Rod never suited up for the Sox, so the animosity is not as deep or is there betrayal that some will feel.

I have a picture of Drew's heartfelt farewell in my office. Drew saved the franchise along with Tuna. Drew also put his farewell in both Boston papers mere days after he signed with the Bills. A class act all the way.

Caveman, on the other hand, went for the money and will always be remembered as someone who left for the cash. Good luck in NYC Johnny :yawn:

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Gainzo is right on the money here. Damon's gesture is very lame. It comes so long after he signed that you have to see it as a desperate move. I'm not a Pats fan at all but I admired Drew Bledsoe very much indeed and thought what he did when the ink was barely dry on his new Bills contract spoke volumes about the man. Damon did this a week after he said Manny and Ortiz should come to bew york as they'd be more comfortable there. F johnny damon.

Damon is all about Damon.

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I have a picture of Drew's heartfelt farewell in my office. Drew saved the franchise along with Tuna. Drew also put his farewell in both Boston papers mere days after he signed with the Bills. A class act all the way.

Caveman, on the other hand, went for the money and will always be remembered as someone who left for the cash. Good luck in NYC Johnny :yawn:

Yeah, but isn't it more often than not, a player leaves one organization for another as a free agent is for the money? Damon is no differeent than Pedro, Lowe, etc. It's all about the Benjamins people.

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Yeah, but isn't it more often than not, a player leaves one organization for another as a free agent is for the money? Damon is no differeent than Pedro, Lowe, etc. It's all about the Benjamins people.

Lowe wasn't wanted back. Pedro didn't leave really for more money, he left for more guarenteed years. Damon left for 3 million dollars more a year, which isn't that much considered how filthy rich he already is. He also is a liar. Pedro and Lowe never really lied.

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Lowe wasn't wanted back. Pedro didn't leave really for more money, he left for more guarenteed years. Damon left for 3 million dollars more a year, which isn't that much considered how filthy rich he already is. He also is a liar. Pedro and Lowe never really lied.

It is semantics, but Pedro left for more money. The Mess gave him more years and I believe gave him more per year (1-3 million per). i think the Sox deal was similar to Damon's 4 years-40 million and the Mess gave him 5 years for 54 million.

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Lowe wasn't wanted back. Pedro didn't leave really for more money, he left for more guarenteed years. Damon left for 3 million dollars more a year, which isn't that much considered how filthy rich he already is. He also is a liar. Pedro and Lowe never really lied.

Okay then, Damon is the only FA to leave his current team for more money...how's that? Give me a break. A player leaves his current team more often than not for the money. I guess Ortiz leaving the Twins for the Red Sox was not about the money...right?

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Okay then, Damon is the only FA to leave his current team for more money...how's that? Give me a break. A player leaves his current team more often than not for the money. I guess Ortiz leaving the Twins for the Red Sox was not about the money...right?

No because the Twins didn't want ortiz back. When we signed him it was for under a million. Damon left for more money, yes, but he out and out lied to Red Sox fans.

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Guys does this really surprise you ? I would be shocked if it did.

Athletes are about one thing.

MONEY

They may sit there in their press conferences and say it wasn't but that is what it is all about.

Damon was all about the money. If Seattle or Toronto had offered him the same deal he would be wearing a Mariners or Blue Jays jersey right now.

Fenway folks will treat him the way they felt he treated them.

Like Crap

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True.

First, Drew did it originally after his trade to Buffalo. Granted, it did not take him two months, so Damon's gesture kind of rings hollow.

mbn - I would not be surprised if Damon gets louder boos.

Jeter has always been a Yankee and A-Rod never suited up for the Sox, so the animosity is not as deep or is there betrayal that some will feel.

I don't know. Clemens and Boggs, true, they were asked to leave, and unwanted by management, never received the treatment that Jeter gets. And A-Rod has gotten it pretty rough the past 2 seasons, although more-so in 2004 than 2005.

IMO, Jeter represents the Yankees. He gets the worst treatment.

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I don't know. Clemens and Boggs, true, they were asked to leave, and unwanted by management, never received the treatment that Jeter gets. And A-Rod has gotten it pretty rough the past 2 seasons, although more-so in 2004 than 2005.

IMO, Jeter represents the Yankees. He gets the worst treatment.

MBN

True.

There is hating a Yankee and hating a Yankee. Jeter is a true Yankee and while I think he is a pillow biter...I can respect his pay through the years.

I think for a short time Damon could take over for Jeter. I can not really place afinger on it, but his leaving just leaves a bitter taste in your mouth.

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MBN

True.

There is hating a Yankee and hating a Yankee. Jeter is a true Yankee and while I think he is a pillow biter...I can respect his pay through the years.

I think for a short time Damon could take over for Jeter. I can not really place afinger on it, but his leaving just leaves a bitter taste in your mouth.

I was thinking this over the other day. I can see Damon getting the rougher treatment the first time the Yankees visit Fenway. But by the second time arounf, Jeter will be the "star" again.:rolleyes:

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