Mr. November to Hang 'Em Up

Originally posted on February 12, 2014

Today "The Captain" announced that he is going to retire at the end of the 2014 season. Although I've never counted myself among the legion of Jeter fans, hearing about his upcoming swan song is indeed sad news for baseball. What I've always found endearing about Derek Jeter is his how he has carried himself for his entire career. Announcing his retirement prior to the season, avoiding the Gotham spectacle of "will he or won't he" is a professional act from a professional ballplayer.

Jeter, now 39, will enter the 2014 with 3,316 hits, which is more than any active player, and more than any other New York Yankee in history. He's second in hits all-time by a shortstop, behind Honus Wagner's 3,430, (which is in striking distance for Jeter). He also leads the Yanks in games played, at-bats, and stolen bases.

Jeter has put up consistent numbers his entire career, and done it under the brightest lights as a Yankee. He's also done it playing shortstop, which is impressive considering the elite SS's from Jeter's era moved to less taxing positions later in their career.

Shimmering stats aside, most people will remember Jeter for the way he played the game. He played with heart, yet always seemed under control of his emotions. He played hard and got dirty, yet still managed to appear sleek and graceful. I'll always remember the perfect inside-out swing that always seemed to put the ball in play - sometimes maddeningly.

Thank you #2 for the memories, and for leaving us with an example of how the game should be played.