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Detroit Tigers Could Replace Victor Martinez With Johnny Damon

The AL Central’s reigning champions are smarting quite a bit after the announcement that Victor Martinez will miss the 2012 season due to an ACL tear. While the Tigers certainly have more weapons than Martinez alone, any franchise would miss a .330 hitter in the heart of its line-up. It’s not surprising then to find Detroit looking for some kind of replacement — such as outfielder Johnny Damon.

Zack Links is reporting that the Tigers are after the veteran outfielder in the hopes he could “set the table” for the rest of the Tigers lineup. He writes:

Detroit lost designated hitter Victor Martinez for the 2012 season last week when the switch-hitter tore his ACL during his offseason workouts, leaving a hole in their lineup. Though Damon turned 38 this offseason, he still posted respectable offensive numbers last season, batting .261/.326/.418 with 16 homers and 19 steals in 647 plate appearances for the Rays, most of which came as a DH.

A signing would make for a reunion between the two sides, as Damon spent the 2010 season as Detroit’s primary DH, though he did make 36 outfield appearances that year. His outfield time was even more sparse in Tampa, with only 16 appearances to his credit.