New York (WFAN/AP) – Reaction to Derek Jeter getting his 3,000th hit Saturday against the Tampa Bay Rays, becoming the first New York Yankees player and 28th overall to reach the milestone.
“I want to give him a big hug. It’s an absolute wonderful accomplishment.”
“This guy has had a magical career and I’m not surprised he had a day like today. … If you wrote a story that would be the ending to it. When he’s going to retire his last game he’s going to get four hits, he’s going to hit the game-winner, he’s going to make a play in the hole, make a jump throw to first and nip the guy in the bottom of the ninth inning and the Yankees are going to win. To win the World Series.”
“Congratulations, first of all, to Derek Jeter on joining the 3,000 hit club. It is an exclusive honor, achieved by only a select group, that not many people can call their own. It is a monumental achievement, and Derek has climbed the mountain. He’s reached that honor, where he can stake his flag in the mountain and call it his own.
“I had the opportunity to play with Derek when he was a rookie in 1996, and I had no doubts that Derek would reach this milestone. He is a very consistent player and he never deviated from his game. When you stay healthy and you are consistent and compile a lengthy career like Derek has done, you have the opportunity to reach that 3,000 hit plateau.
“Reaching the 3,000 hit mark is another piece of the legacy that Derek has created. It won’t be too long now before we are on the verandah in Cooperstown at the Otesaga Hotel celebrating his Induction to the Hall of Fame.”
“I always thought he was a good hitter, ever since he came up. You just knew that, as consistent as he was, sooner or later he was going to get to this point. I’ve always had respect for him because he did things right, as far as the game was concerned. He moved the ball around. And to get to that marker, that’s what you have to be able to do. You can’t be one-dimensional.”
“He’s one of those guys you just respect so much and feel so honored that you’ve been able to watch him grow up, as much as anything else. It’s been a pleasure to watch him play.”
“I’ve seen him since the Fall League when I think he was 19 years old. He’s still the same kid. A little different haircut, but always plays the game right. He always treats people right and he tries to beat your brains out. That’s a good way to go about things.”
“Reaching 3,000 hits was never a goal. And especially with all the injuries I had, I never thought it was realistic. Watching Robin get there first helped me relax. It just happened naturally and 3,000 hits is as much a product of longevity as much as ability. I knew it was rare achievement and that it might help me to get into the Hall of Fame. Looking back, I am proud to have reached that milestone.
“To have the most hits for the most prestigious franchise in all of sports is pretty special. If Derek stays healthy, he has a good chance to rack up a lot more hits.”
“If you play as many games as I did and get as many at bats as I did, then I was eventually going to get to 3,000 hits. It wasn’t until my career was ending did I realize how special it was to reach 3,000 hits, based on how few people had done it. I am more proud of playing as long as I did, then anything. My hits total was the culmination of playing 20 years and being healthy enough to do so.
“I love what I see of Derek Jeter. He is the complete package: a leader, clutch player, and lots of success on baseball’s biggest stage, New York. Being the complete package is something every player dreams of.”
“You knew it was going to happen. He’s too good of a player. He’s one of those guys that was going to get it fast. Unfortunately injuries sort of slowed it down, but he’s a phenomenal player.”
“I saw the first one. I was in the dugout for the first one. I feel real old today. It’s typical Derek. He does it with a flare, a winning run and every one of them meant something.”
“One thing I did know is that he was going to be as good as he was capable of being. I spent some time around him, his Mom and Dad and his sister. He’s got a grip on reality. There’s a lot of things that are around this game that aren’t reality, the way you travel, the money you have. When they’re grounded like that, they’ve got a real head start.”
“Derek has always played with a relentless, team-first attitude. And that mind-set has helped sustain this organization’s objective of fielding championship-caliber teams year after year. It’s only fitting that he reach 3,000 hits during a victory against one of our American League rivals.
“Today we celebrate a remarkable individual achievement by one of the game’s greatest ambassadors. On behalf of the entire New York Yankees family, we congratulate Derek on his historic accomplishment.”
Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg:
“Long before joining the 3,000 hit club, Derek Jeter became another one of New York’s icons because he represents what is best in the spirit of our city: an unbreakable belief that with hard work and determination, anything can be accomplished. Perhaps above all else, Derek is someone who loves this city and who has a long history of giving back to the place and the people that helped make him the superstar he is. New York has a greater baseball tradition than any other city, but we’ve never had a player get all 3,000 hits in a New York uniform until today. Congratulations Derek – you’ve made all of New York City proud.”