UPDATE: The White Sox pull their offer to Damon; Boras pleads with the Tigers

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Update: Wait! Maybe the White Sox aren’t out of it, at least according to what Kenny Williams told Joe Cowley of the Chicago Sun-Times:

“If circumstances change in the next 24 hours I certainly will be
willing to revisit it,” Williams said. “Jermaine Dye cashed in big
time for something like this, taking less money to win a championship,
and maybe Johnny wants to do the same.”


“It’s the nature of the beast, but this has gone on long enough. We
have a have a pretty good club as is. Would Johnny Damon add to it?
He’s proven that. He was icing on the cake as far as we’re concerned.”

We’ve waited this long, why not another 24 hours?

4:51 PM: ESPN Chicago’s Bruce Levine reports that the White Sox have pulled their offer to Johnny Damon:

“It became clear to us in our recent negotiations that the money
that we were offering was not going to be good enough for Johnny at
this time,” White Sox general manager Kenny Williams told
ESPNChicago.com. “At this particular point, we feel it’s necessary to
withdraw our offer.”

The White Sox made a $6 million offer for Damon, according to major league sources.

Meanwhile, Buster Olney tweets the following:

Heard this: Scott
Boras is now working a two-pronged approach on the Tigers. No. 1 —
he’d like to get Detroit to remove all deferred money out of
their one-year, $7 million offer. Or No. 2, he’d wants Ilitch to
actually give Damon legitimate second year in their offer.

I call it “pleading” in the headline because it cannot properly be called a negotiation when one person wants concessions but has utterly no leverage and nothing to give up in return. The White Sox are out of the picture. The Tigers have made a one-year deferred-money offer. Take it or leave it, Boras.

Earlier today Tigers’ GM Dave Dombrowski, while confirming that the team has made an offer to Damon, said that there is an end in sight to the Damon drama. He didn’t explain what that means exactly, but I hope that end is a phone call to Boras this evening in which Dombrowski says “you have until noon tomorrow to either accept or reject the offer we have on the table. After that, we delete you from the speed dial.”

Report: Twins sign Erick Aybar to a minor-league deal

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The Twins have reportedly signed free agent shortstop Erick Aybar to a minor-league deal, LaVelle E. Neal III of the Star Tribune reported Friday. FanRag Sports’ Jon Heyman adds that the deal comes with a potential $1.25 million if Aybar reaches the majors, with additional incentives based on plate appearances. He’ll be able to opt out on March 27. The team has yet to confirm the signing.

Aybar, 34, is now four years removed from his career year in 2014. He’s been in a state of steady decline since then, slashing just .234/.300/.348 with seven home runs and 11 stolen bases over 370 plate appearances for the Padres in 2017. His poor performance wasn’t helped by a fractured left foot, either, which cost him almost six weeks on the disabled list.

Still, the Twins see something promising in the veteran infielder, and reportedly intend to use him as another utility option this spring. Per Neal, Aybar will join fellow backup infielders Eduardo Escobar and Ehire Adrianza and may even (temporarily) take over for Miguel Sano at third base if Sano isn’t able to shape up for the role by Opening Day.