Friday, August 28, 2009

Coming to terms with Derek Jeter... ...A personal journey


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I despise Derek Jeter... ...but lately I've found myself coming to terms with the facts.
Jeter is the modern day Yankees equivalent to Babe Ruth, Lou Gerhig and Mickey Mantle. He possesses both the pizazz of Joe DiMaggio and the October dominance of Reggie Jackson.
The fact that I have so painfully come to terms with day Derek Jeter will be a member of the famed Monument Park at the brand spanking new House that George Built at the corner of East 161st Street & River Avenue (New Yankee Stadium).
Monument Park is an outdoor museum that contains a collection of plaques and retired numbers, honoring the most prestigious member of baseballs most storied franchise, the New York Yankees.
Billy Martin, Roger Maris, Yogi Berra and no-number honouree Miller Huggins are just a few of the 26 honoured in Monument Park.
So, why #2?
Derek Jeter hold countless all-time Yankee records. Most career singles, Most hits @ Ol' Yankee Stadium and Most career doubles just to name a few. Jeter is also second on the Yankees all-time hits list, fourth in games played and tenth overall in both the RBI and Home-run categories? From the short-stop position!! Absolutely incredible.
Jeter who grew up just down the Pike, in near by Pequannock, New Jersey has always been a fan favourite in the Bronx and with 10 all-star appearances, 4 World Series rings, 3 Golden Gloves and another 3 Silver Slugger Awards it's no wonder Jeet's is so popular in New York. It's that same ga-ga for Jeter popularity that has caused me to despise one of, if not the, greatest player of the modern era. Sure, at one time I thought Barry Bond was the marquee player of the steroid era, but as those waters continue to muddy it seem increasingly more likely that Derek Jeter name is not on "that list". And if it were? We'd probably never know it.
Zoltan Black
The "list" I referred to in the final sentence is a reference to a list of 104 players who tested positive for banned substances during a 03' amnesty type testing session that involved all Major League players. The testing was carried out on the condition that the number of positive tests had to register below 5% to avoid formal testing and penalties. Despite the promises of both Major League Baseball and the Players Association to keep the names of the positive testees anonymous, names from that list are slowly finding the light of day.
Extra Point to me for being able to use the term testee, in a totally appropriate fashion.
And congratulations to Derek Jeter. Your cheap smile and greasy hair have officially won you another fan, me.

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