Johnny Damon
Johnny Damon

Johnny David Damon (born November 5, 1973) is an American former skilled baseball outfielder who performed in Main League Baseball (MLB) from 1995 to 2012. Throughout his MLB profession, Damon performed for the Kansas Metropolis Royals (1995–2000), Oakland Athletics (2001), Boston Pink Sox (2002–2005), New York Yankees (2006–2009), Detroit Tigers (2010), Tampa Bay Rays (2011) and Cleveland Indians (2012). Damon additionally performed for the Thailand nationwide baseball workforce and was a member of the squad for the 2013 World Baseball Basic qualifiers.

Early years

Damon was born on Fort Riley, an U.S. Military put up in Kansas.[1] His mom Yome is a Thai immigrant to the US and his father Jimmy is an American of Croatian and Irish descent.[2] They met whereas his father, a workers sergeant in the US Military, was stationed in Thailand. Damon spent a lot of his infancy as an “Military brat,” transferring to a number of posts together with Okinawa, Japan and West Germany earlier than his father was discharged from the Military. The Damon household settled within the Orlando, Florida space whereas Johnny was a pre-schooler.[3]

Damon was a quiet little one, largely on account of a stutter. “My ideas simply raced forward of my tongue,” Damon mentioned of his downside. “I might sing songs as remedy, and I bought higher, however I nonetheless simply saved quiet more often than not.”[4] He performed in South Orange Little League as a toddler. He performed for the Walker Jr Excessive baseball workforce earlier than attending Dr. Phillips Excessive College in Orlando when throughout his senior 12 months in 1992, he was rated the highest highschool prospect within the nation by Baseball America, was named to USA At this time’s Excessive College All-America workforce and was the Florida Gatorade Participant of the Yr. Damon additionally ran observe at Dr. Phillips the place his senior 12 months he was runner up within the 200m sprint. Damon additionally performed soccer in highschool, as soon as getting hit by Warren Sapp and sustaining the primary concussion in his life.[5]

Taking part in profession

Kansas Metropolis Royals (1995–2000)

Damon was chosen by the Kansas Metropolis Royals within the first spherical (thirty fifth total) of the 1992 MLB draft. He made his MLB debut on August 12, 1995 after enjoying the earlier season with the minor league Wichita Wranglers. He performed for the Royals from 1995 to 2000. He scored 104 runs in 1998 and 101 runs in 1999. One in all his greatest seasons got here in 2000 when he led the American League in runs with 136 and stolen bases with 46, as he was second in hits (214), at bats (655), and plate appearances (741).

Oakland Athletics (2001)

Damon spent 2001 with the Oakland Athletics. In a three-way commerce involving the A’s, Royals, and Tampa Bay Satan Rays, the A’s acquired Damon together with pitcher Cory Lidle from the Satan Rays and second baseman Mark Ellis from the Royals.[6] He was third within the league in at bats (644) and seventh in runs (108).

Boston Pink Sox (2002–2005)

Damon at bat for the Pink Sox in spring coaching 2005

On December 21, 2001, Damon signed a four-year, $31 million contract with the Boston Pink Sox.[7]

In 2002, he led the league in triples (11) and was third in infield hits (25), changing into the primary participant chosen by the followers within the inaugural American League All-Star Last Vote.[8]

On June 27, 2003, Damon grew to become solely the second participant in MLB historical past since 1900 to file three base hits in an inning, when he did so in opposition to the Florida Marlins.[9][10] Throughout Sport 5 of the 2003 American League Division Sequence, Damon collided head-on with teammate Damian Jackson whereas each gamers have been making an attempt to chase down a pop fly. Damon suffered a extreme concussion and needed to be faraway from the sphere on a stretcher. Jackson was additionally concussed, however was capable of stroll off the sphere with help.[11]

In 2004, Damon was second within the league in runs (123) and commenced to re-establish himself among the many premier lead-off hitters and heart fielders within the sport. In arguably his greatest season within the Main Leagues, Damon batted .304 with 20 house runs and 94 RBIs and confirmed improved persistence on the plate. Based on his autobiography, he was solely the fourth leadoff batter within the historical past of Main League Baseball to drive in additional than 90 runs in a season. Damon batted a torrid 7-for-15 throughout that 12 months’s Division Sequence in opposition to the Angels[12] however struggled within the ALCS in opposition to the Yankees, going solely 3-for-29 from the plate via the primary six video games.[13] In Sport 7, Damon hit two house runs, one in all which was a grand slam, to steer the Pink Sox to the pennant. Within the World Sequence, he additionally hit a house run because the Pink Sox received the collection in opposition to the St. Louis Cardinals in a four-game sweep. This was the primary Pink Sox World Sequence championship since 1918.

Via his four-year profession with the Pink Sox (2002–2005), Damon appeared in 597 video games (590 in heart area and 7 as a delegated hitter)[14] and hit 56 house runs.[15] Of his 2,476 at bats, 2,259 have been as leadoff hitter. Damon batted second within the lineup for 156 at-bats in 2002, accounting for almost all the relaxation besides for infrequent pinch hit. He began two video games because the third hitter in 2004, and in 2005, he had 624 at-bats, and all however three because the lead-off hitter. He additionally earned his second All-Star choice, beginning because the American League’s heart fielder.[14] He led the AL with 35 infield hits,[16] and matched the 35 doubles he had hit in 2004.[15]

New York Yankees (2006–2009)

On December 20, 2005, Damon signed a four-year, $52 million contract with the New York Yankees.[7] The Pink Sox stood agency on a three-year contract and selected to not negotiate in opposition to a five-year deal proposed by agent Scott Boras.

Damon’s signing with the Yankees led to his being subsequently vilified by many Pink Sox followers due to his beforehand professed loyalty to the town and Pink Sox group, together with his now notorious assertion in Could 2005, the place he claimed, “There is no method I can go play for the Yankees, however I do know they are going to come after me laborious. It is positively not an important factor to go on the market for the highest greenback, which the Yankees are going to supply me. It is not what I would like.”[17]

Because the Yankees have a strict gown code for gamers forbidding each lengthy hair and facial hair past neat mustaches, Damon had his shoulder-length “cave man” hair minimize and beard shaved on December 22. Damon, who had a clean-cut look till his third season with the Pink Sox, had been planning on chopping his hair and shaving his beard off even when he did not signal with the Yankees, however waited till after he signed with them to be able to forestall hypothesis.[18][19][20]

The next season, in a pivotal 5 sport collection in August between the Yankees and Pink Sox at Fenway Park, Damon went 3-for-6 in every of the primary three video games, together with a doubleheader on August 18, and a sport on August 19. Damon hit two house runs, drove in eight runs, and scored eight runs within the first three video games because the Yankees received by a mixed rating of 39–20 and dealt a extreme blow to the Pink Sox 2006 play-off aspirations.

In 2006, Damon completed third in runs (115) and ninth in stolen bases (25) within the AL, whereas hitting 24 house runs, his profession excessive. He additionally tied his mark of 35 doubles from the earlier two seasons.[15] He was solely one in all 4 gamers within the main leagues to hit not less than 24 house runs and steal not less than 24 bases.

Damon with the Yankees in 2008

On June 7, 2008, Damon went 6-for-6 within the Yankees 12–11 win over the Kansas Metropolis Royals, together with a walk-off ground-rule double, which had bounced over the wall. He’s the primary Yankee to have six hits in a 9 inning sport since Myril Hoag completed the feat in 1934.[21] Damon mentioned in a post-game on-field interview that this was his first walk-off as a Yankee.

The Yankees positioned Damon on the 15-day disabled record for the primary time in his MLB profession on July 6, 2008 with a bruised AC joint in his left shoulder. The damage occurred a day earlier when Damon collided with the outfield wall in an try and catch a triple.[22] At the moment, Damon was one in all solely three energetic main league ballplayers who had performed not less than 10 years within the majors with out happening the disabled record. He returned to energetic obligation, and hit 27 doubles for the season.[15] Damon hit 53 house runs in his three full seasons with the Yankees.[15]

On July 27, 2009, Damon hit his two hundredth profession house run in opposition to the Tampa Bay Rays’ Brian Shouse.[23] For the 2009 season, he batted .282 and tied for the lead amongst AL left fielders in errors (with 5), whereas he was fourth within the league in runs scored (107).

Damon hit a house run in Video games 3 and 4 of the 2009 ALCS, defeating the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim in six video games. When the Yankees went on to play the Philadelphia Phillies within the 2009 World Sequence, Damon bought credit score for stealing two bases in a single play when the Phillies protection was shifted in opposition to batter Mark Teixeira.[24] Damon bought his second championship ring because the Yankees would finally defeat the Phillies in six video games.

Damon, after successful his second World Sequence, entered free company after the 2009 season regardless of expressing his need to return to the Yankees.[25] He insisted that the Yankees not even make him a suggestion, nevertheless, until they pay him not less than the $13 million he earned for the previous 4 years.[25] Because of his contract calls for, the Yankees signed 1B/DH Nick Johnson to a one-year/5.5MM deal, regardless of Damon decreasing his wage calls for on the final minute.[26] The Yankees then signed outfielder Randy Winn to a one-year $2 million[27] deal which primarily closed the door on Damon’s return to the Bronx.[28]

Detroit Tigers (2010)

Damon batting for the Detroit Tigers in 2010

On February 20, 2010, Damon agreed to a one-year, $8 million take care of the Detroit Tigers.[29] On April 14, 2010, he recorded his 1,000th profession RBI in opposition to the Kansas Metropolis Royals.[30] On Could 1, he hit a walk-off house run in opposition to Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim pitcher Scot Shields at Comerica Park to win the sport 3–2.[31] On July 6, Damon recorded his 2,five hundredth profession hit off Jake Arrieta of the Baltimore Orioles, and hit a walk-off house run off David Hernandez, giving the Tigers a 7–5 win.[32] For the season, he batted .271 with eight house runs and 51 RBI.[14] He grew to become a free agent on the finish of the season.

Tampa Bay Rays (2011)

Damon throughout his tenure with the Rays in 2011

On January 21, 2011, Damon agreed to a one-year, $5.25 million take care of the Tampa Bay Rays. The Rays additionally signed his former Boston Pink Sox teammate Manny Ramirez in a package deal deal advised by agent Scott Boras.[33][34] Additionally reunited with Damon was former Pink Sox participant Kelly Shoppach.

Supervisor Joe Maddon mentioned he anticipated the 37-year-old Damon to usually get replaced by Sam Fuld throughout the season late in video games that the Rays are main.[35] After Ramirez’s abrupt retirement, this could be moot as Damon primarily would play because the designated hitter.

On April 16, 2011, Damon had the game-winning hit for the fifth consecutive sport for the Rays, two of which have been walk-off hits. On June 29, 2011, Damon tied Ted Williams for 71st on the all-time hit record with 2,654 hits. The hit got here at Tropicana Discipline within the backside of the sixth inning. On July 2, 2011, Damon went 4-for-4 and his first-inning single moved him previous Ted Williams on the all-time hit record. He would end the season 57th all-time with 2,723 profession hits.

In Sport 1 of the ALDS, Damon hit a two-run house run within the second inning off Texas Rangers beginning pitcher C. J. Wilson to present his workforce an early 2–0 lead. The Rays received the sport 9–0, nevertheless they finally misplaced the best-of-five divisional collection 3–1.[36]

Cleveland Indians (2012)

On April 12, 2012, Damon signed a one-year minor league contract with the Cleveland Indians for $1.25 million (and a further $1.4 million in incentives).[37] On Could 1, Damon was known as as much as Cleveland.[38] He made his debut on Could 2, batting leadoff in opposition to the Chicago White Sox.[39] He completed the sport 0–3 with a stroll.[40] Indians supervisor Manny Acta dropped Damon to seventh within the batting lineup after going 4–29 within the leadoff place, together with 2 hits in his final 18 at-bats.[41] On June 26, in a sport in opposition to the Yankees, Damon grew to become the 52nd participant in MLB historical past to amass 2,750 profession hits. Heading into the All-Star break, Damon had 35 hits in 163 official at-bats and was hitting .215 in 50 video games.[42] On July 20, Damon tied a season-high with three hits versus the Baltimore Orioles.[43]

Damon was designated for task on August 3, 2012.[44] He was launched by the Indians, together with pitchers Derek Lowe and Jeremy Accardo, on August 9.[45]

Damon completed his profession with 2,769 hits, inserting him 54th on the MLB all-time profession hits leaders.

His first 12 months of eligibility for the Nationwide Baseball Corridor of Fame and Museum got here in 2018 the place he joined a notable group of first-time candidates, together with Chipper Jones, Jim Thome and Omar Vizquel. Damon solely acquired eight votes (1.9{ae90547d17d4d74b17007ee836a04674fd006933c139011dc78eb03c100070a7} of the voting poll) and was thus dropped from future consideration.[46]

Free company (2013–2015)

Damon hoped to be signed for 2013, and supplied the Yankees the chance to signal him to a contract for the league’s minimal wage as a substitute for the injured Curtis Granderson, additionally expressing a willingness to be launched as soon as Granderson returned. The Yankees indicated that they weren’t fascinated with signing Damon. Damon remained unsigned for all of 2013, and didn’t play.[47]

In late 2013 and early 2014, Damon indicated a need to maintain enjoying, partly to have the chance to realize 3,000 hits (he wanted 231 to achieve that purpose). He informed members of the media that he has stayed in good bodily situation and hoped to obtain invites to spring coaching.[48][49]

Damon didn’t obtain any gives previous to the beginning of the 2014 season. In a Could 2014 interview whereas in Boston to rejoice the tenth anniversary of the Pink Sox 2004 World Sequence championship, Damon indicated that he has no plans to formally announce his retirement, regardless that he acknowledged that he’ll possible not play within the main leagues once more. He additionally said that he nonetheless needs to play, has continued to remain in good bodily situation, and will play if given the chance, saying “I really feel like if a workforce calls me, I might be prepared. If I play tonight, I am going to hit a homer.”[50] On June 22, 2014, he performed in his first New York Yankees Outdated-Timers’ Day.[51]

A July 2014 press report indicated that Damon nonetheless hoped to play once more within the main leagues. Based on the story, in June Damon accomplished an impromptu session with a batting observe pitcher for the Philadelphia Phillies, who was impressed sufficient to counsel that the Phillies ought to think about signing him.[52]

On August 4, 2014, Damon gave an interview with the WEEI-FM radio present “Middays with MFB” and indicated that whereas he needs to nonetheless play, no groups have expressed an curiosity, and “these days are over”.[53]

Based on press accounts in December 2014, Damon hoped to play in 2015, and his agent informed a reporter “If you happen to ask Johnny, he’d love to come back again.”[54]


  • 1993 – Midwest League All-Star OF
  • 1994 – Carolina League All-Star Royals Minor League Participant of the Yr
  • 1995 – Baseball America 1st workforce Minor League All-Star, KC Royals Minor League Participant of the Yr, Texas League All-Star & Most Precious Participant, AA All-Star, and AA Participant of the Yr
  • 2000 – KC Royals Participant of the Yr
  • 2002 – All-Star (Inaugural AL All-Star Last Vote winner)
  • 2005 – Baseball America 2nd-Workforce All-Star, AL All-Star
  • 2009 – TYIB Award: Finest Postseason Second
  • 2017 – Asian American Corridor of Fame

Different appearances

In 2005, Damon wrote Fool: Beating “The Curse” and Having fun with the Sport of Life with Peter Golenbock.

Damon contributed backing vocals to Dropkick Murphys’ 2004 single “Tessie.”[55]

Damon hosted WWE Uncooked on December 21, 2009.[56]

Damon participated within the Celeb Apprentice competitors within the spring of 2014 in New York Metropolis. The exhibits that he filmed have been a part of the 2015 season of the present. He was eradicated from the present on the episode which aired on February 2, 2015.[57]

Damon appeared on the Animal Planet present Tanked in 2016.[58]

Damon appeared on MTV Cribs in 2005, the place he gave a tour of his house close to Orlando, Florida.[59]

In April 2018, Damon was introduced as one of many celebrities who will compete on season 26 of Dancing with the Stars. He was partnered with skilled dancer Emma Slater.[60] He was eradicated on the primary episode, and he positioned in ninth place.

In August 2019, Damon and his spouse appeared as one set of major constitution visitors throughout seasons 4 & 5 of the present Beneath Deck Mediterranean.[61]

Private life

Alex Rodriguez and Damon

Damon has had two marriages and has fathered eight youngsters. Damon married Angela Vannice, his highschool sweetheart in 1992, and later divorced in 2002. The couple had a set of twins (a son and a daughter) collectively.[62]

Damon married Michelle Mangan in 2004. The couple have six youngsters collectively; 5 daughters (together with a set of twins) and a son.[63][64][65][66]

Damon and his household reside in Windermere, Florida. Whereas with the Yankees, Damon and his spouse lived in Cresskill, New Jersey.[67]

He’s energetic with the Wounded Warrior Mission, which works to lift consciousness and enlist the general public’s assist for the wants of severely injured service women and men.[68]

Damon was one of many victims of the $8 billion fraud perpetrated by convicted wealth supervisor Allen Stanford.[69]

Damon spoke at a rally in Florida throughout Donald Trump’s 2016 presidential marketing campaign and chanted in assist of a border wall between the US and Mexico.[70] Damon previously served as a committee member on Trump’s council on Sports activities, Health, & Vitamin.[71]

On October 26, 2019, in Orlando, Florida, Damon was the Particular Visitor on the Orange County Republican Celebration’s Trump Defender Gala and 2019 Annual Lincoln Day Dinner.[72][73]

On February 19, 2021, Damon was arrested in Windermere, Florida, for driving whereas intoxicated (DWI) and for resisting an officer with out violence. Police reported that he had a blood alcohol content material (BAC) of .30, measured two hours after he was stopped by police.[74] Bodycam footage launched by the Windermere Police Division confirmed Damon claiming that his arrest was a part of being focused due to his assist of Trump.[75]

See additionally

  • Prime 300 house run hitters of all time
  • Listing of Main League Baseball profession hits leaders
  • Listing of Main League Baseball profession doubles leaders
  • Listing of Main League Baseball profession runs scored leaders
  • Listing of Main League Baseball profession stolen bases leaders
  • Listing of Main League Baseball profession whole bases leaders
  • Listing of Main League Baseball annual runs scored leaders
  • Listing of Main League Baseball annual stolen base leaders
  • Listing of Main League Baseball annual triples leaders
  • Listing of Main League Baseball single-game hits leaders

  • Profession statistics and participant info from MLB, or ESPN, or Baseball-Reference, or Fangraphs, or Baseball-Reference (Minors)
  • Johnny Damon at IMDb
Preceded by

Albert Belle
American League Participant of the Month
July 2000
Succeeded by

Glenallen Hill

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