Damon-White Sox talk is surfacing

Talk surfaced Thursday that the White Sox are pursuing free-agent
outfielder Johnny Damon.

Here’s why such a move would make sense:

  • The White Sox’s need for a leadoff hitter. Damon is
    superior to the team’s current leadoff option, Juan
    Pierre.
  • The White Sox’s need for a left-handed bat. Pierre,
    Mark Kotsay, Mark Teahen and A.J. Pierzynski currently are the
    team’s only left-handed hitters. The Sox want either a
    left-handed bat with power or strong on-base skills. Damon offers
    both.
  • The role. The White Sox balked at keeping Jim Thome because
    they could use him only as a DH. Damon would offer more
    versatility. Manager Ozzie Guillen could use him both as a DH and
    left fielder.
  • The ballpark. Chicago’s U.S. Cellular Field is far more
    hitter-friendly than Detroit’s Comerica Park. Damon put up
    big numbers last season at the new Yankee Stadium. If he did the
    same in Chicago on a one-year deal, he could re-enter the market
    in a strong position next season.
  • The town. Damon likely would pick Chicago over Detroit, and
    his wife, Michelle, is said to prefer a bigger, more cosmopolitan
    city.

Of course, the possibility also exists that Damon’s
agent, Scott Boras, is merely trying to draw the White Sox into the
bidding to persuade their division rival, the Tigers, to increase
their offer.