By Adam Harris
Derek Jeter is a guaranteed Hall of Famer, one of the best short stops to ever play the game, and is one of the most clutch performers in MLB history, and even after the day he had on Saturday, getting his 3,000th hit via a home run and going 5 for 5 fans still find reasons to hate him.
I don’t get it one bit.
Jeter plays the game correct, and always has his whole career. On and off the field, he is a great ambassador and representative of the MLB, which frankly needs some re imaging after the “steroid era.”
During an era when players were making their money concentrating on home runs, RBI’s, and slugging percentage, Jeter stayed true to himself and concentrated on doing what it takes to win championships. He has won five by the way.
Jeter shows greatness in many ways, like on the stat sheet, hitting over .290 fourteen times, scoring over 100 runs twelve times, with an OBP over .380 seven times, and had over 190 hits ten times in his career.
Jeter also shows his greatness in the way he plays the game. He will go the other way to advance a runner, will walk when needed, will work the count, and is a great base runner and defensive shortstop. He is in the highest profile position in all of the MLB, but he handles it with ease, maturity, and humbleness.
He is never in the media for a negative reason, and this is not because the media is bias towards the Yankees, but because he never gives the media a reason to shed a negative light on him.
Fans dislike Jeter because accomplishments of his are blown out of proportion by the media. For example, when Jeter dove into the stands down the left field line on July 1st in Yankee Stadium against the Red Sox, after catching a foul ball busting his face on a chair, it was talked about and written about like it was the best play in the history of baseball. Fans did not like that, and while I will agree that play was blown out of proportion, I say who cares.
That is not a reason to hate Jeter. The play in game 3 of the 2001 ALDS in Oakland where he backed up the overthrown relay to home to shovel the ball to Posada, nailing Giambi at the plate was not overblown, on the other hand. That was one of the smartest, most instinctive plays I have ever seen in baseball.
But this is all besides the point, because they are not reasons to hate Jeter. Often fans feel he is placed on an unnecessary pedestal in the baseball world. I say he deserves every compliment and accolade he gets.
Yes, he has had a fortune of being on the winningest franchise in all of sports, but he is a main reason why the Yankees won five championships in thirteen years. He is not along for the ride, he is the main reason the ride gets to where it needs to go.
Stop hating him. If you do, you are not a true baseball fan, or you’re simply jealous of his life and what he does for his team.
If it were up to me, his pedestal would be even higher than it is right now.