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Yankees Can't Afford Damon

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Now, I've heard everything...

He's built for that bandbox though, so I'm okay with him going elsewhere and seeing light hitting Gardner or whomever for the majority of those at bats.

Report: Yanks, Damon not talking

ESPN.com news services

After four seasons and one championship, Johnny Damon won't be returning to the New York Yankees unless he slashes his asking price.

"I'm not having any discussions on him," general manager Brian Cashman said, according to MLB.com. "His abilities exceed the money that I have."

Cashman told the Web site that his priority is finding a right-handed bat for the outfield.

Damon, a left-handed hitter, batted .282 with a career-high tying 24 home runs and 82 RBIs, but he is 36 years old.

He earned $13 million last season. After back and forth in negotiations yielded little, ESPN The Magazine's Buster Olney reported that the Yankees offered Damon a one-year deal over the weekend. Now, they appear to be backing off.

"He's a valuable player that a lot of teams are talking to, I'm sure," Cashman said, according to MLB.com. "His abilities exceed my physical ability to keep my finances afloat."

The Yankees continuously lead the league in payroll, but there are indications that they aren't willing to go higher than their 2009 levels.

"I'll always try to get the budget pushed, but you're not always successful," Cashman said, according to the Web site. "The Steinbrenner family has been extremely generous for adding talent, but you can't do everything."

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