Topic: Johnny Damon

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Johnny David Damon (born November 5, 1973), is an American professional baseball outfielder and designated hitter with the Tampa Bay Rays of Major League Baseball. From 2000–2008, he was third among active players in runs (1,008) and seventh in hits (1,590) and stolen bases (392). He is currently second among active leaders in triples (100), five behind Carl Crawford. He is also sixth among active players in career hits with over 2,500.

Damon was born in Fort Riley, an army base in Kansas. His mother, Yome, is from Thailand and his father, Jimmy, is American of European descent. They met while his father, a Staff Sergeant in the United States Army, was stationed in Thailand. Damon spent much of his early childhood as an "army brat," moving to several bases from Okinawa, Japan, to West Germany before his father left the Army and settled the family in the Orlando area while Damon was still a pre-schooler.

Damon was a quiet child, largely on account of a fluency disorder. "My thoughts just raced ahead of my tongue," says Damon of his problem then. "I’d sing songs as therapy, and I got better, but I just kept quiet most of the time." He played in Dr. Phillips Little League as a child. Damon attended Dr. Phillips High School in Orlando, Florida when during his senior year in 1992, he was rated the top high school prospect in the country by Baseball America, was named to USA Today's High School All-America team, and was the Florida Gatorade Player of the Year. Damon also played football in high school, once getting hit by Warren Sapp and sustaining the first concussion in his life.

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