Let’s Get Older!

Before you look at this, it’s really important to note that it’s just a rumor from a “source”. 99% of these never turn into anything at all, and that’s why I don’t always want to post them. But then I realize that people are going to want to discuss them, so I might as well provide a forum for that. I just ask that you not completely destroy the front office over this until it, you know, actually happens.

Ken Rosenthal:

Two older free agents – outfielder Johnny Damon, 37, and catcher Jason Varitek, 38 – are among the players on the Dodgers’ radar, according to major-league sources. 

In fact, the Dodgers are in contact with virtually every free-agent catcher – Rod Barajas, A.J. Pierzynski, Miguel Olivo – as they try to determine their next step with Russell Martin.

Martin, 27, is at least a week away from running, sources say, and perhaps six weeks away from resuming baseball activities. He would be returning to the most physically demanding position on the field. And his offensive performance is in decline – he posted on-base slugging percentages of .680 and .679 the past two seasons, though he did not play after Aug. 3 last season due to his injury.

Damon seemingly would be a better fit in the American League – more than 75 percent of his plate appearances for the Tigers last season were as a DH. But with the Dodgers, he could replace free agent Scott Podsednik and hit second behind Rafael Furcal.

The Dodgers likely would want assurances that Damon was in good enough shape to play the outfield. But the team’s current left fielder, Jay Gibbon, also is below-average defensively, and Damon would carry added value as a positive influence for the club’s younger players.

Damon is all but unplayable in the outfield and had a .756 OPS last year. Varitek hasn’t been worth more than 1.0 fWAR since 2007.

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  2. [...] a year ago at this time, we spent November 29 and 30 talking about Juan Uribe‘s new contract, checking into reported interest in Johnny Damon & Jason Varitek, realizing that Jon Garland‘s “durability” [...]