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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Saturday, February 20, 2010

Tigers, Johnny Damon agree on $8M, 1-yr deal, source says

AP Sports Writer

The Detroit Tigers and outfielder Johnny Damon have reached a preliminary agreement on an $8 million, one-year contract.

A person familiar with the negotiations told The Associated Press on Saturday night that the contract is subject to a physical, which will be some time next week. The person spoke on condition of anonymity because the deal hasn't been announced.

Tigers general manager Dave Dombrowski confirmed Friday he had made a contract offer to Damon, but Dombrowski did not return messages seeking comment on Saturday.

The 36-year-old Damon hit .282 with 24 homers and 82 RBIs last season, helping the New York Yankees win the World Series. He likely will bat leadoff for the Tigers, filling the void left when Detroit dealt Curtis Granderson to the Yankees.

Damon also will give Detroit a left-handed bat it needs in a righty-heavy lineup and a veteran in the outfield, where his savvy is an asset and his arm a liability.

The Atlanta Braves appeared interested in adding Damon and the Chicago White Sox recently withdrew their contract offer to him.

Damon became a free agent when his $52 million, four-year contract with the Yankees expired. He wanted a long-term deal at the same average salary, but they weren't interested. The Yankees kept reducing their offer, claiming payrolls constraints.


AP Sports Writer Ronald Blum in New York contributed to this report.