Damon enjoying life, won't call it retirement

BOSTON -- Asked Wednesday what his thoughts were on former teammate Manny Ramirez becoming a minor league player-coach for the Triple-A Iowa Cubs, Johnny Damon wasted no time in showing support for Ramirez.

"Good for him," Damon said while visiting Fenway Park for the Red Sox's 10-year anniversary of the 2004 World Series championship. "The fact that Manny wants to stay in the game of baseball and help teach young guys to try and become better ballplayers, good for him."

Damon also made it clear that he has no intentions of following in Ramirez's footsteps.

"That's not going to happen anytime soon for me," Damon said.

After 18 years in the game, Damon hasn't played for a major league team since 2012. Nowadays, he stays in shape by playing soccer in his spare time. He is the public face of a sports drink company (A-GAME), a muscle tape company (MuscleAidTape) and a speaker company (Grain Audio). He also established the Johnny Damon Foundation, a nonprofit designed to raise and donate funds to charitable organizations and assists local and national programs that provide leadership and growth opportunities for disadvantaged children.

For all intents and purposes, it seems Damon is enjoying his retirement. However, Damon hasn't officially retired, nor does he plan to.

"I'm not planning on announcing my retirement anytime soon, even though a couple of years ago my agent wanted me to," Damon said. "I just really never needed that pat on the back or to go visit places to say I'm retiring."

At 40 years old and sitting on 2,769 career hits, Damon said he plans to continue going about his life and living it. In addition to his entrepreneurial and charitable work, Damon currently resides in Florida with his wife, Michelle, and six kids.

Despite refusing to make his retirement official, Damon admits that he knows it's only a matter of time.

"I'm sure that day is going to come," Damon said. "I've told [the media] things before and things have changed. Whether it was, '[I'm] not going to sign with the Yankees,' and I did ... "

The former Red Sox-turned-Yankee received a standing ovation Wednesday night from the Fenway crowd, a far cry from the boos he often heard in his four years with the Yankees and the mixed reactions he would receive as a visitor afterward.

"They were booing the uniform," Damon said.

Damon also didn't shy away from the idea of throwing on a uniform once more and returning to the major leagues. In fact, he said he considers himself ready to go, or at least more ready than any of the other members of the 2004 Red Sox, perhaps excluding David Ortiz.

"I feel like if a team calls me, I can be ready," Damon said. "If I play tonight, I'll hit a homer."