Let us all try not to be prisoners of the hall of fame moment in which Derek Jeter went 5 for 5, hitting a monster shot at home to get his 3000th hit; then later hitting the game winning single in the late innings to end his day¦ what a way to make us all remember, it couldn′t have been scripted any better for the Yankees and the Yankee captain.
Before that day I was leading the charge to find a solution for the problem of a declining shortstop, with limited range stunting the growth of the young players and the organization itself. The iconic day aside, not much is likely to change on the field- he will probably never hit 310 again, he won′t hit 20 home-runs nor will he steal 20 to 30 bases ever again. But can you really have a figurehead at shortstop?
All these questions aside, I can′t help but be in awe at what I saw and I′ll gladly admit I have become a prisoner of that moment.
Does Jeter have 2 or 3 more years? You can′t really blame the Yankees because what choices did they really have, what else could they have done with his contract? Jeter hit around 330 in 2009, that′s just 2 years ago and maybe he has enough left to be out there and be productive¦It is possible that he may finish the season batting 275.
Not great for a 312 career hitter but it is very good. The only question now is whether he will accept his role, the only role I see fit for an aged player on a great team like the Yankees. Jeter must accept not being the same guy he once was and his role must be reduced.
He will inevitably have to go to the bottom of the lineup because you can′t release trade or bench the Yankee captain; the great number 2. It′s a tough spot to be in and I hope this doesn′t end badly for both parties- But it is up to Jeter at the end of the day.
Now you have this All Star game debacle (too strong a word maybe) in which Jeter doesn′t want to participate due to being emotionally and physically tired from the race to 3000 hits. Who are we to say he is not¦this is a pressure filled sport and it gets to the best of athletes and at the end of the day, the big picture is his obligation to the pinstripes and winning another World Series; maybe his last before the curtain closes.
Finally, I′ll admit it again; I have become a prisoner of a historic moment involving the future hall of famer; that moment was iconic and it shows the greatness in the quiet Yankee captain; enough greatness to be given a pass for what he did and has continued to do; at least for another season.