When players, scouts, coaches, managers, or executives discuss Derek Jeter, they always return to that comment.
"Derek Jeter played the game right."
These words are worthy of more than ever after the scandal involving electronic theft of signs that has conquered Major League baseball.
Baseball is in crisis. How the game responds to this terrible loss of integrity will determine its future.
On this stage, Jeter will be elected to the National Baseball Hall of Fame on Tuesday. The only question is: will Jeter be a unanimous selection?
The Yankees Shortstop played the game right in an age when the game was played wrong. The Astros are at the forefront of the fraud scandal that cost three managers the job: Houston & # 39; s A.J. Hinch, Boston Alex Cora and Mets-Carlos Beltran. In addition, Astros general manager Jeff Luhnow, who was the darling of the analytics crowd, was fired.
Derek Jeter needs the game more than ever.
Jeter played very seriously. He was never involved in a scandal. He did his job to the best of his ability, won five World Series every day, and was named an All Star 14 times. Even if you weren't a Jeter fan, you had to respect the way he did business – and that should be celebrated.
There were no abbreviations for Jeter. If he wanted to improve something, he would work on it. He lived in the moment and never looked too far forward or back. This special game, this inning, this at-bat was the most important thing in his world.
He wasn't a fan of the analytics movement that was about baseball. I remember one day when he took off his hygiene socks at the Yankees clubhouse when he took off his hygiene socks: "This game is more than just numbers, there is a human element, there is a heart and a soul and sweat in the game."
Baseball is more than just numbers. Players are more than assets.
The game is never easy and Jeter, as CEO of the Marlins, learns how difficult it is to build a winning team. He needs to find a Derek Jeter-like player to support his cause.
In 20 seasons, Jeter collected 3,465 hits, the sixth most in history and most ever achieved by a short stop. He knocked in 1,311 runs and scored 1,923 runs. That fits, because the original Yankee Stadium was opened in 1923. Jeter was not a home run hit and made 260 home runs. He reached 0.310 with a percentage of 0.377 based and a percentage of 0.440 over the course of his career.
In the postseason, over 158 games, Jeter beat .308. Mr. Consistency. He produced a base percentage of .374 and a higher slugging percentage of .465 when he flogged 20 home runs after the season.
Derek Jeter appeared. He never resigned from a challenge and a generation of Yankees fans adored him for the way he played the game, the five rings he won, and his loyalty to George Steinbrenner.
He won five gold gloves, although his range was questioned.
The sixth selection of the 1992 design came from Central High School in Kalamazoo, Michigan, and soon won New York City. He did it through character and hard work. He played the game to win and with integrity.
The Yankees needed Jeter more than ever and he helped the franchise regain lost fame. The captain did his job. When he had to make adjustments, he made them. He may not have liked it, especially on the defensive, but he knew it was the best for his game.
That day baseball needs Derek Jeter to show the way again. Integrity is as important as hitting .300.
Play the game right, do the little things. Chasing the game can put you in a situation where the ball finds you and the runner doesn't slip at home.
In the end, you'll be rewarded, and on July 26th, Cooperstown will see the biggest crowd for an launch that surpasses the 2007 Cal Ripken Jr. and Tony Gwynn brand with 82,000 fans.
You will come to honor the captain – who played the game properly.