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.