Today: Jun 17, 2024

Number 2 is number 1 in sports fans’ hearts everywhere

Jen HofferSports Editor

 

With Mo leaving at the conclusion of the 2013 season, there are talks now about if the aging Jeter will even be back next season.

Last week Jeter was put on the disabled list, which would make him ineligible for the rest of the season.

Jeter has been on and off the disabled-list all year; whether it’s a hamstring strain or a sore ankle, Jeter is at a point in his career will he is never going to play at the capacity he’s able to ever again.

It’s not his fault; that’s what aging does to a player. But let’s say Jeter does return next year. He won’t be able to perform near his regular ability at all and he won’t be as nearly productive.

Jeter’s range at shortstop has slowly become smaller in the past few years. He’s hitting just under .300 in the 17 games he’s played in this season.

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Face it Yankee fans; Jeter is no longer an everyday shortstop anymore. And with Alex Rodriguez facing a suspension of 211-games at the conclusion of the season, the Yankees left side is not looking too promising.

Jeter not only brings another level of special talent to the Yankees, his presence on the field and the clubhouse impacts the entire team, the fans of New York, and sports fans everywhere.

We witnessed this in their playoff run last season against the Detroit Tigers. As soon as Jeter fell to the field with a broken ankle we felt the entire team, stadium, and sports world deflate.

The Yankees just didn’t look like the Yankees the rest of that series. Jeter’s one of those players that puts meaning into the name New York Yankees, and without him they’re just a team.

But that day will soon come, and it seems to be looming on him and Yankee fans, where Jeter will have to hang up that pinstriped No. 2 jersey and just embrace what he’s given the city and milestones he’s accomplished in his 20 year career as a New York Yankee.

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Whether it’s flying into the stands to make an incredible diving catch against rival Red Sox, making a moving speech at the conclusion of the last game played at the old Yankee Stadium, the freaking insane “flip play” that is replayed now on sports networks everywhere, or getting his 3,000 career hit on a home-run (and going 5-5 in the same game), Jeter has stolen sports fans hearts everywhere.

He was just a goofy kid from Kalamazoo, Michigan who caught the eyes of baseball recruits everywhere as he made his way up to the major leagues.

In a Colorado Rockies free agent report, a baseball scout noted Jeter’s performance as excelling and having natural flowing movements.

He noted that Jeter was special.

“You get excited just watching him warm up,” the report said. “He has the potential to be an all-star shortstop at the major league level.”

Four years later in 1996 Jeter was part of the Yankees and was named Rookie of the Year at the young age of 22.

Just two years later, Jeter lived up to the scout’s future prediction as he went on to play in

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Jeter’s numbers scream hall of famer in the future, no doubt. But its his passion and love for the game that makes Derek Jeter truly one of a kind. I mean come on, when Red Sox fans respect and cheer a player on the Yankees; you know that guy’s pretty special.

When that time comes for Jeter, he’ll only leave us with memories to last Yankee fans a lifetime.

Whether its as simple as the majestic everyday jump throws to first base, the way Yankee Stadium erupts when Derek Jeter is introduced by Bob Sheppard, or that small fist pump at the end of the every game ensuring fans that all was right in the world, Jeter has made his mark; a mark that will remain at the Stadium, the clubhouse, the dugout, the field, and on Yankee hearts everywhere.

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