5 greatest Derek Jeter moments
No other player will ever wear the No 2 jersey for the New York Yankees. The franchise retired the number to celebrate and honor the legendary career of Derek Jeter. April 14, 2017 was the day when the New York Yankees officially retired the number 2. Not only that, but they also put a plaque in Monument Park to celebrate the career of one of baseball’s all time greats. If anyone deserves these honors, it is the man they called “Mr. November.”
Derek Jeter’s numbers are astonishing. He won five World Series titles, made it to fourteen Al-Star teams, won the World Series MVP once and the Golden Glove Award on five occasions. No other New York Yankees player in history has scored more than Jeter’s 3,465 hits or played more than the 2,747 games he played for the franchise. He also leads the Yankees in stolen bases (358), doubles (544), at bats (11,195) and plate appearances (12,602).
The numbers however only tell part of the story. Derek Jeter was an icon, a leader both on and off the pitch. He was someone the team looked for inspiration and Jeter thrived under pressure. These are things you cannot quantify but these were the aspects of his game that were even more valuable than the numbers he put up.
Derek Jeter was part of the New York Yankees for two decades and he delivered some incredible performances during that time. Here we look at the 5 greatest (according to us) Derek Jeter moments as a New York Yankee.
Many people think that the famous “Flip” remains the greatest ever defensive play in Derek Jeter’s career. The play and the timing of it make it such an important moment in Jeter’s career.
The New York Yankees were up against the Oakland Athletics in the 2011 American League Divisional Series. The Yankees had lost the first two games of the series at home and were in deep trouble. They travelled to Oakland under a lot of pressure but led the game 1-0. It was late in the game and the Yankees had to dig deep to hold on to that lead. Shane Spencer, their right fielder made an erratic throw very late in the game and it looked as though the A’s would score with Jeremy Giambi running for home.
Step up one Mr. Derek Jeter. He came out of nowhere to scoop the ball up and passed it backhanded to Jorge Posada who tagged Giambi less than a second before he touched home. The New York Yankees held on for the 1-0 win and then sealed the series back in the New York in Game 5.
Game 4: 2001 World Series
If the Flip is one of the Derek Jeter’s greatest ever defensive plays, then what he did in Game 2 of the 2001 World Series remains among his greatest overall moments.
The New York Yankees were up against the Arizona Diamondbacks and were in a deep hold once again. The Diamondbacks were up 2-1 in the series and the Yankees had to raise their game to mount a comeback.
That game was tied and in the tenth inning, Derek Jeter stepped up to the plate. He was up against Byung-Hyun Kim and on the ninth pitch, Jeter connected. The ball went to the deep right field and just about cleared the wall. Jeter’s celebrations as he completed the HR tells its own story. Yankees won the game and even though the Diamondbacks won the World Series 4-3, this play is what got him the title of “Mr. November.”
Derek Jeter had a poor 2010 season and at thirty six years of age, many people thought he would never be as good as he was. That thought was more or less echoed by the Yankees management too as negotiations over a new contract hit an impasse. In the end everything was sorted and Jeter signed a three year deal.
His form in 2011 did not improve much and he went .260/.324/.324 all the way till 12th of June before injuring his calf. He made his comeback in the first part of July and it looked as though the old Jeter was back. His best performance that season came against the Tampa Bay Rays.
Derek Jeter was looking for his 3000th hit. It was the third inning on July 9, 2011 and he was facing David Price of the Tampa Bay Rays. Like he had done so many times over the years, Jeter ran the count full. Then Price delivered a hanging curveball that was too good to miss. Jeter connected and the ball flew over the fence. Jeter had his 3000th hit and his Yankees teammates joined in on the celebrations as soon as he reached the home plate.
Anyone who follows baseball knows that there is absolutely no love lost between the New York Yankees and the Boston Red Sox. From late 1990s to mid 2000s, the rivalry just went up a notch or two.
Derek Jeter delivered a moment to remember in 2004 and that too against the Red Sox. The two great rivals were very close that season too in the standings. The Yankees were leading the Red Sox by a slim margin of only three games in the division standings. On July 1, the Yankees had the opportunity to sweep the Red Sox and the game went all the way to the twelfth innings with the score tied.
The Red Sox had runners at the second and third base. Trot Nixon of the Red Sox hit a shallow pop up by Tanyon Sturtze that looked destined to go over the fence and it would have too if it weren’t for Jeter. Mr. November ran all the way from shortstop to catch the ball and went flying head first into the crowd. He got up with a bloodied face and that image will forever be one of Derek Jeter’s greatest moments. He did not take part in the game after that but his incredible catch helped his team clinch a 4-3 triumph in the thirteenth inning.
The last of the 5 greatest Derek Jeter moments on our list is now a play that he made but a speech that he delivered. The New York Yankees were slated to move from the Old Yankee Stadium to their current home, the New Yankee Stadium so to speak in 2009.
It was September 21, 2008 and there were 54,610 fans at the Yankee Stadium (Old). The occasion was the last ever game to be played at the famous old ballpark. Once the game had ended, Jeter picked up a mic and delivered a speech that will forever be ranked among the most emotional in the history of the sport. The ground had witnessed countless historic moment over the years and this was an icon paying tribute to all those memories and the fans that made the place so great.
Derek Jeter and the entire team then jogged around the ballpark one last time. It was as good a send off as any.
Derek Jeter had a career to rival any great in the history of the sport and it certainly wasn’t easy to pick 5 greatest Derek Jeter moments. We have come up with our list now lets see what you have to say about it.