Keidel: Derek Jeter Dementia

By Jason Keidel
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There you are, tethered to some fantasy, pulsing with projection because your crumbling hero somehow reflects upon you.

This is not directed at the 25-year-old who still sees Derek Jeter through the prism of his adolescence, because your mindset is understandable. But if you’re my age (41) and still cling to Jeter like a teddy bear fresh from the shelf at FAO Schwarz, you have issues.  I’m talking to you.

I know you love Derek Jeter. He loves you, too, in that I-make-$3 million-a-month-to-live-off-my-reputation kinda way. There was a time when he needed your singular sense of affection. Now is not that time.

Indeed, he so cherished your vote, your ballot-box ballad that he refused to attend the All-Star Game, under the guise of resting the very calf that was just fine for his 3,000th hit.

For goodness sake, Jeter isn’t even the best shortstop on his own team. Lord knows there are myriad reasons to dislike Alex Rodriguez, but he’s five times the player Jeter ever was. Just open your eyes. And it was Jeter who brooded far too long upon A-Rod’s arrival, stretching a schism that needn’t exist, based on a silly quote years earlier, for which Alex apologized.

Bring it, your obdurate theories while I tend to facts, the most important one being that there’s no stat in the history of human athletics to suggest that any 37-year-old man (not using steroids) gets better at his craft, particularly a shortstop. Cal Ripken hit .271 at Jeter’s age, and Ernie Banks hit .246. Joe Louis and Jackie Robinson are allowed to get old, but not Derek Jeter. Seriously?

I’m astonished by the rancor I received for making the simple (and accurate) assertion that Derek Jeter is no longer a great baseball player. There’s only infinite data to support it, including his batting average (over 40 points below his career average) his on-base percentage (50 points below his career average), and every other important statistic, for nearly two years now.

Heaven knows why that kid surrendered his college tuition to Jeter, burping that ball for a MetroCard and two tickets to Lion King. But we can’t be mad at him. He’s a child. What’s your excuse?

My inbox boiled with invectives, “Eat it, Jason,” was the kindest among many unprintable things, folks hiding behind pseudonyms. When did I say he wouldn’t get 3000 hits? Never. I said he’s a shadow of his former brilliance. I said it last year, this year, and I’ll be correct again next year. Deal with it. I’m not right because I’m brilliant, blessed with unique prescience. Unlike many of my media brethren, I consider my readers peers, not peasants. In this case, I’m just a little more lucid.

Many of these rabid missives came from women. Women! Men are born fools – and I am chief among them – but women are the sensible gender. I know why boys want to be like him and girls want to be with him. Just try to keep, if not a leg, a foot or a few toes back in reality.

You’ve gulped that pill and entered the sporting iteration of an acid trip, your battle cry sung by Grace Slick, lost in the forest with that White Rabbit, stumbling around your inverted reality where all things get bigger and better. It’s all gibberish, fueled by this misguided mantra you refuse to swallow. Let me help you help yourself.

I fed your delusion as long as I could, but now it’s dangerous, a Derek Dementia soon to be certified by the American Medical Association as a pandemic. (Not really, but you get my drift.) Writers are a romantic lot, and I fed your fantasy as long as I could. Then he got 3K hits and my inbox bubbled with vulgarity.

No doubt the walls of your man cave are lathered with all things Jeter. Try replacing the posters with Curtis Granderson’s visage. Curtis is more articulate, equally gifted, gritty, and classy. I pined for Granderson the moment I watched him with Detroit. He’s a born Yankee, like your beloved Derek, whose only sin is age, though you can’t accept it.

I think Cary Grant and Denzel Washington were exquisitely handsome at 37, though I never saw them hit Doc Halladay’s fastball at 38. Neither will Jeter.

I was at The Game back in 2004 when Jeter dove into the hard, plastic ocean of blue seats for that pop-up and emerged with a bumpy, bloody wince, and my skin bristled with goose bumps with the rest of you. That was seven years ago. Open your calendar, your heart, and your mind. It’s 2011, gang. Get used to it.

We’re New Yorkers, imbued with fight – not the venom with which the world west of the Hudson hideously typecasts us. We’re good people. But we love a beef And we’ve got one now.

Keep it coming. Stand on your warped prerogative as a sightless fan and forgo the facts. Your contention that Jeter is still Jeter is, in the words of the greatest writer to grip a pen, a tale told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, signifying nothing…

Feel free to email me: Jakster1@mac.com

www.twitter/JasonKeidel

You heard the man. Address your issues in the comments.

Comments

One Comment

  1. A says:

    Just enjoy his remaining seasons, because once he is gone he is gone.

  2. JK says:

    We can only pray that he’s gone, Jonas. 90 percent of this dialogue, though wild, rampant and rigorous, was actually constructive. Many thanks to you and the others who understand that debate is not an embellished peeing contest. Logic wins, even here. My metaphorical cap tipped to you, sir.

  3. Paul D says:

    After poring through this fantastic bandy of ideas and opinions, I can only reach this concluding thought. That this is like “The Emperor’s New Clothes.” Some see a multi spangled array of colors and gleaming gems, while others only see the tatered and worn out garb of a soldier coming back or being helped back from the field of battle to be put to rest and have his commission retired.
    P.S.: to Charles,
    Your continued chirping only helped to strenghthen their case. The article was not about Jeter, but about you. You have to realize this. He’s a hall of famer and has done the game well. Be happy with that.

    1. Charles says:

      “Your continued chirping only helped to strenghthen their case. The article was not about Jeter, but about you. You have to realize this. He’s a hall of famer and has done the game well. Be happy with that.”

      I am happy about that, I guess. Derek Jeter doesn’t really make that much of a difference in my life, actually.

      I still think this was an incredibly lame and unoriginal column. There was no real logical point. It was just pointless complaining. As silly as it is for Yankees fans to act like Derek Jeter is the same player he was in 1999, it’s even more silly to write column after column whining about a guy who just passed 3000 hits at the age of thirty-seven.

      It’s also really dumb to argue that Derek Jeter doesn’t even deserve to be a starting shortstop on a major league team, and use that as supporting evidence for your argument that Jeter is a jerk for not attending the All Star Game.

      If the thought of Derek Jeter is so repugnant and you’re tired of hearing about him, STOP WRITING ABOUT HIM. If Jason Keidel hates hearing about Jeter so much, why is he writing a 1000-word column on it, and responding to EVERY SINGLE COMMENT in the comments section?

    2. JK says:

      You put a brilliant bow on it, Paul, particularly your post scriptum to the rather disturbed person posing as a fan. He regurgitates thoughts to the point of pure insanity. I’ve asked him as nicely as I can to stalk another writer, since this one is clearly beneath his brilliance. The bile is endless, and I haven’t decided if it’s more deranged or pathetic. I’d ask the brass to ban his commentary, but they’ve tried that with other stalkers and all they do is change emails, pseudonyms, IP addresses, etc. Your comments, however are always welcome, Paul, no matter whether we agree on the subject. Enjoy your weekend.

  4. bronxilla says:

    Here’s another example of Jeter dementia. Last night Jeter went deep in the hole to grab a grounder by Jose Bautista and used his “patented” jump throw to get the ball to first. Sterling and Waldman could not stop talking about what a great play Jeter made. Only one problem: Bautista was safe and it wasn’t even close. A great play? Maybe a great effort, but a great play?

    1. Jonas A-K says:

      Oh Christ, Sterling and Waldman… “IT IS HIGH! IT IS FAR! IT ISSS caught by the warning track, and the inning is over.” I always wondered how Matsui, a Japanese person, felt about “AN A-BOMB! FROM A-ROD!”

      And Waldman… are words really even necessary?

    2. Paul D says:

      You can’t use those two to make your case. One is senile and has to be legally blind. The other is a loopy yenta striken with pinstripe fever. They’re a mess to begin with.

  5. JK says:

    Hate to break this to you, Hugo, but there are intelligent people who disagree with you. Your default argument that we’re hacks because we don’t share your view is infantile at best.

    1. Charles says:

      “Your default argument that we’re hacks because we don’t share your view is infantile at best.”

      It’s no worse than your default argument, which is that the only reason people praise Derek Jeter is that they’re rabid Yankees fans who suffer from dementia.

      Derek Jeter’s career numbers:
      ——————————————————————————————-
      .313 BA, .383 OBP, .449 SLG, .832 OPS, .369 wOBA, 124 wRC+, 118 OPS+, .290 EQA

      3005 H, 481 2B, 62 3B, 237 HR, 1728 R, 1159 RBI, 331 SB, 973 BB, 1607 K.
      ——————————————————————————————-
      Let’s compare those numbers to those of Edgar Renteria, one of the better shortstops during Jeter’s era:
      ——————————————————————————————-
      .286 BA, .344 OBP, .398 SLG, .741 OPS, .328 wOBA, 96 wRC+, 94 OPS+, .263 EQA

      2284 H, 425 2B, 29 3B, 136 HR, 1183 R, 900 RBI, 294 SB, 710 BB, 1148 K.
      ——————————————————————————————-
      I do understand that it’s infantile to act as though Jeter is on the level of Cal Ripken, Jr. or A-Rod when Rodriguez played short. It’s equally infantile, however, for people to invest so much time and energy trying to besmirch the legacy of an obviously-great ballplayer like Derek Jeter.

      1. Jonas A-K says:

        For the last time, no one is trying to belittle or besmirch Jeter’s career. He’s had a great one. This was just to point out once and for all that he’s not what he used to be. Doesn’t change the fact that he’s been great. Why can’t you see that? Between his article, his comments and mine, it’s been laid out for you countless times!

      2. Charles says:

        “…no one is trying to belittle or besmirch Jeter’s career. He’s had a great one. This was just to point out once and for all that he’s not what he used to be. Doesn’t change the fact that he’s been great. Why can’t you see that?”

        I disagree. I think the entire point of this piece was, in fact, to belittle Jeter’s career and rile-up Yankees fans. This wasn’t a cogent, balanced analysis of Jeter’s career. It was a shot across the bow at Jeter and Yankees fans.

        To state that fans of the Yankees and Derek Jeter suffer from “dementia” does not represent mature, fact-based criticism. It’s infantile and unprofessional. Worse, it’s solidly unoriginal. I’ve been reading this same basic article for a decade now.

        Fine. Derek Jeter is overrated. In fact, of all of the players in the entire history of the game with 3005+ hits, a .310+ BA, a .380+ OBP, 1700+ runs scored, and five World Championships, Derek Jeter is, by far, the most overrated.

        And anyone who looks at his career accomplishments and thinks he’s a great ballplayer is clearly out of his mind, and is just drinking the Yankee Kool-Aid. We all know that had Bobby Meachem and Alvaro Espinoza been blessed with Jeter’s supporting cast, they, too, would have 3000 hits and five championship rings.

      3. Jonas A-K says:

        Really? You insist on believing that the entire point of this piece was to belittle Jeter’s career? Let me show you a few quotes *directly from the article:*

        “I’m astonished by the rancor I received for making the simple (and accurate) assertion that Derek Jeter is no longer a great baseball player. There’s only infinite data to support it, including his batting average (over 40 points below his career average) his on-base percentage (50 points below his career average), and every other important statistic, for nearly two years now.”

        “When did I say he wouldn’t get 3000 hits? Never. I said he’s a shadow of his former brilliance.”

        “…like your beloved Derek, whose only sin is age, though you can’t accept it.”

        “I was at The Game back in 2004 when Jeter dove into the hard, plastic ocean of blue seats for that pop-up and emerged with a bumpy, bloody wince, and my skin bristled with goose bumps with the rest of you. That was seven years ago.”

        And now from his comments:
        “My beef is with with folks my age who worship Jeter and refuse to regard him as human. Perhaps you’re less jaded, but I assure you there are legions of adults out there who refuse to admit that he’s lost a step. You can choose not to believe me, of course, but I’m not sure what I gain by lying about it.”

        “As I said many times, mine were Muhammad Ali, Reggie Jackson, and Franco Harris. I was sick from seeing Harris in a Seahawks uniform, and even more so watching Ali lose to chumps. But I eventually became an adult and let go of certain neuroses. This Jeter thing is like nothing I’ve ever seen.”

        “My beef is not with Jeter as much as those who act like angry infants when I state facts. I can accept if from actual kids, not those my age.”

        If, after actually reading my entire comment, you STILL insist on believing that this is an attack on and dismissal of Jeter’s entire career, then I will kiss a baboon’s ass after taking a dump running at full speed.

      4. Charles says:

        “Really? You insist on believing that the entire point of this piece was to belittle Jeter’s career?”

        More accurately, the entire point of this piece was for a little-known writer to draw attention to himself by insulting Derek Jeter and Yankees fans. All of the quotations you selected carry the same sneering, condescending tone. Keidel repeatedly waves-off Jeter’s career accomplishments while concurrently lacing into Jeter and Yankees fans.

        Keidel overlooks completely the undeniable fact that Derek Jeter is, in fact, one of the greatest shortstops of all-time, and that this is why he has received so much attention. The fact is that if it were so easy for a shortstop to average 200 hits per year for fifteen years as Jeter has done, more shortstops would have thought to do so.

        I’ve seen these petty, childish rants about Derek Jeter and Yankees fans for years. If it makes people feel better to suppose that Derek Jeter really isn’t that good, and that the only reason anyone ever paid attention to him is that he plays for the Yankees and has always been surrounded by great players, fine.

        At the end of the day, his achievements are what they are. 3005+ hits, a .300+ BA, and a .380+ OBP are all great. Yes, there have been better players, but there have been many, many more worse players than Jeter.

        In the end, it’s not those who believe Jeter is a great player who suffer from dementia, but those who refuse to accept his greatness. You are the ones who are allowing childish emotion to cloud your judgment.

      5. Jonas A-K says:

        It’s silly for you to compare this to articles that you’ve seen “for years,” since those articles were clearly ridiculous, as “years” ago Jeter was undeniably great. The whole point here is to point out his production last year and this year, as pointed out in the article and reproduced in my previous comment. “Years” ago, nobody could’ve written about the past year and a half, since they didn’t happen yet.

        Also, you really think Keidel wrote this to bring attention to himself? I haven’t seen any additional coverage of this article anywhere.

      6. JK says:

        Charles, you have my permission to stalk another writer. Since we don’t have your obvious genius, go be brilliant and stop wasting time with us.

      7. JK says:

        Jonas, Chuck has developed a “Single White Female” obsession with us. Perhaps if we’re quiet he’ll leave. Clearly he has no life (and we do) and perhaps he puts “Hating” on his W-2.

      8. Charles says:

        “Jonas, Chuck has developed a ‘Single White Female’ obsession with us. Perhaps if we’re quiet he’ll leave. Clearly he has no life (and we do) and perhaps he puts ‘Hating’ on his W-2.”

        Do you really want me to go away? It seems I represent 20% of your readership.

      9. JK says:

        No, sir, I’m sincerely asking you to leave. I don’t know how else to put it. My readership is my concern, not yours. If there’s a polite cell in your body, please respect and honor my request.

      10. Charles says:

        “I’m sincerely asking you to leave. I don’t know how else to put it. My readership is my concern, not yours. If there’s a polite cell in your body, please respect and honor my request.”

        Fine. I’ll leave your precious little column and your four readers in peace.

        Before I do, I will tell you that you are a case study in projection. You have taken shots at Derek Jeter and a large number of baseball fans. You have repeatedly insulted me, saying that I have no life, that I’m “deranged,” “pathetic,” and that I suffer from dementia, among a whole laundry list of puerile insults.

        Then, you turn around and criticize me for not being “polite.” Considering the level of disrespect you have shown me, I feel I am being polite.

        I challenged your argument, and rather than responding to the substance of my argument, which I supported with statistical evidence, you have responded by calling me names. There was a more civil, more logical option you could have chosen, but you chose the route of name-calling.

        Perhaps if you’re that sensitive and thin-skinned, you should avoid being so insulting and abusive to others, especially to the few people who actually read your column. If you can’t take it, don’t dish it.

      11. Jonas A-K says:

        How polite you are indeed, Charles, King of Politeness. Might I reproduce the first sentence you graced us with?
        “This article is an embarrassment that ought be titled, “The Generic, Uninformed Idiot’s Perspective.””

        Followed by Keidel:
        “Thanks for stopping by, Chuck. If you hate it, me, my perspective, you’re welcome to turn the page.”

        And yet you kept on. How polite indeed. Just like the old adage: “if you can’t take it, dish it out and pretend like you haven’t done anything to deserve it.”

      12. Charles says:

        “How polite you are indeed, Charles, King of Politeness.”

        I’m not sitting here pretending to be polite. I definitely made a few rude comments that were unnecessary and didn’t add anything substantive to the discussion. However, I’ve made the calculation that there isn’t anything to be gained from trying to be polite towards someone with the condescending attitude Mr. Keidel displays.

        I’m not here asking for any sympathy. I’m not going to act like my feelings are hurt because someone I don’t know said something mean about me in the comments section of a blog.

        I believe that if you’re a blogger for a sports talk radio station in NYC – WFAN is probably the preeminent sports talk station in the world – and you have the balls to rag on a first ballot Hall of Famer and a huge segment of one of the world’s largest fan-bases, then you should be prepared to deal with the consequences.

        I don’t believe that the tone of this column was (or was intended to be) polite. This was not measured and considered criticism; it was a mean-spirited, immature attack on Derek Jeter and Yankees fans.

        I see the saying “facts are facts” bandied about quite liberally here. Well, I listed a whole bunch of statistics proving that Derek Jeter is one of the greatest shortstops of all-time.

        I also asserted that it is logically inconsistent to argue that Jeter is in severe decline and that fans who voted him to the All Star Game suffer from dementia; and pivot off that point to attack Jeter for not attending the All Star Game.

        Basically, Mr. Keidel argues that Jeter is a scrub and that all the fans who wanted to see him in the ASG are morons. However, Jeter is a jerk skipping the ASG and not pleasing this legion of idiots.

        I simply don’t believe this is a sound argument. I also don’t believe that one can display the attitude Mr. Keidel puts forth and expect to garner any sympathy, especially from the very people he insults and chastises.

  6. HUGO says:

    Keidel, is this the only way you can get attention? How about learning to write!

    1. Kurt Spitzner says:

      No offense but you obviously have no idea how to read or you would have never made such an inane statement as that!

      1. JK says:

        There’s a breed of human, Kurt, who won’t argue because they hate it and loathe facts. But infantile insults? Well, that’s their realm. Isn’t it so much easier to call me an idiot than to actually engage in a debate?

    2. JK says:

      I know you think Derek plays for you, but he doesn’t, my friend. He played for a quarter-billion bucks. And the fame. And the women. Sorry.

  7. Paul D says:

    Semantics, Jonas, semantics. How many other guys, not pitching Sunday decided, for whatever reason, no to go. Selig’s game has become like the Pro Bowl, regardless of whatever significance he places on the outcome. I’ve said it before. If he wants the respective managers to go out and win this game, then he’s gotta give them veto rights over the fan vote. It’s obvious the players don’t keep it as the priority it once was. Jeter chose not to go and the sides fell in place, which saved Selig the embarrassment of having to hold a press conference to efectively investigate the no-shows. It was all about Jeter these past few days, taking the spotlight away from this trend.

  8. Kurt Spitzner says:

    Hey CBS,when are you going to put this man on the air so we can all hear him when we are too busy to be able to sit in front of a computer screen?We need someone like this to bring a new perspective to the world of sports radio!

  9. JK says:

    As Jonas said, SL, I can’t force people to read the entire piece. My beef is with with folks my age who worship Jeter and refuse to regard him as human. Perhaps you’re less jaded, but I assure you there are legions of adults out there who refuse to admit that he’s lost a step. You can choose not to believe me, of course, but I’m not sure what I gain by lying about it.

    1. lydia says:

      I’m a Met fan, and I voted for Jose Reyes, and I have NO problem with him not playing a game that I’m not going to watch just to show his appreciation. I’d rather he get better for the games that count.
      I am a 28 years old doctor, mature and beautiful.and now I am seeking a good man who can give me real love , so i got a username Andromeda2002 on–s’e’ek’c’ou’ga’r.c óm–.it is the first and best club for y’ounger women and old’er men, or older women and y’ounger men,to int’eract with each other. Maybe you wanna ch’eck ‘it out or tell your friends!

  10. SL says:

    Another waste of an article. I don’t think any baseball fan or yankee fan will say that Jeter is as good as he used to be OR that he is the greatest player ever. He had a very fine career, certainly hall of fame caliber compared to many others that are already in the hall of fame. Yes, he had the advantage of playing for the yankees and that surely helped him be on 5 world series champion teams and get more notoriety than if he played in Kansas City. Would Berra, DiMaggio, Mantle been as well known and played on as many championship teams if they didn’t play for the yankees?? So what the real difference between them and Jeter?? And to say that ARod is 5 times better a player is quite ridiculous. Again, no one is denying that ARod is a better all around player, but ARod has been linked to and admitted to using steroids which Jeter has NEVER been linked to, so that has some relevance in this whole argument also in my opinion. This puts Jeter in a category well above the likes of ARod, Bonds, Clemens, etc., but of course this doesn’t seem to matter to the writer of the article whose only purposes of writing this article was to take cheap shots at him.

    1. Jonas A-K says:

      “I don’t think any baseball fan or yankee fan will say that Jeter is as good as he used to be OR that he is the greatest player ever.”

      Sadly, sir, as much as I wish you were right, you are very wrong. A quick readthrough of the comments would show you that right now. Mr. Charles seems to have a strong opinion on that, for one.

      This article was not meant to take cheap shots at Jeter, as it really just pointed out facts, but to take aim at those who you refuse to believe exist: the staunch Jeter-lovers who refuse to believe that he’s not the greatest ballplayer ever, that he’s not declining, that he’s still the best shortstop and leadoff hitter around.

      I still don’t understand how anyone, if he or she actually READ this whole article (or even the first few paragraphs) could think this is taking shots at Jeter. Observe that he is compared to very revered and Hall of Fame shortstops who had even better career numbers: “Bring it, your obdurate theories while I tend to facts, the most important one being that there’s no stat in the history of human athletics to suggest that any 37-year-old man (not using steroids) gets better at his craft, particularly a shortstop. Cal Ripken hit .271 at Jeter’s age, and Ernie Banks hit .246. Joe Louis and Jackie Robinson are allowed to get old, but not Derek Jeter. Seriously?”

      FYI: Neither Ripken nor Banks took steroids, and they were both better ballplayers overall than Derek. That’s not taking anything away from him, as very few ballplayers were *better* than those two. But the point of this article is: everyone gets old and their skills decline, no matter how great they are (unless you’re perhaps Satchel Paige). So why do so many people – and yes, there *are* many of them – insist that Jeter is defying those odds, despite his performance indicating otherwise?

      1. SL says:

        Exactly WHO are these people that are saying that he is defying any odds?? Mr. Charles? LOL You guys know darned well that any athlete that plays in NY has advantages of greater notoriety over equal athletes in other cities. It’s not Jeter who has put himself in this position. He was just luckier than others to get picked by the yankees when he was a youngster. Obviously he did something right even back then to get recognized by them. So you guys think that guys like Mantle, DiMaggio, Berra, and even Robinson weren’t a bit overrated because they just happened to play in NY?? Why pick on Jeter and let all others slide? You guys are making way too much of NOTHING calling Jeter out here when plenty others fall into the same category. Simply shows some sort of weird Jeter hatred or jealousy in my opinion. Call Jeter whatever the hell you want, but he has had the longevity, stamina, and discipline to stick around this team (in an age where very few play as long with one team only) to compile the 3000 hits, something NO other yankee has ever done and yet many of them ARE in the hall of fame. Say whatever you want, but that there is quite an accomplishment, something you boys could only have dreams of ever accomplishing yourselves. I don’t consider Jeter God, nor do I think many other people do either. You guys just can’t handle that fact that he is getting some accolades that you yourselves have never gotten. Maybe if you guys actually had a talent in something, you might have gotten some also. LOL

    2. JK says:

      I tried to reason with you, SL, but you have no interest in that. I have hundreds of emails from people who refuse to accept Jeter’s decay. Besides, if my piece is the waste of space you call it, why are you wasting your time here with us? Go be brilliant somewhere.

      1. Jonas A-K says:

        Exactly. SL, I have no reason to be jealous of Derek Jeter. I respect what he’s done. Again, use your eyes and your brain, actually read what I wrote and notice that all-time greats are, in fact, NOT being let off the hook (Ripken. Banks. It seems you are not aware that there were other great(er) ballplayers who DIDN’T play for New York. Trust me, there were). Also, for what seems like the millionth time, no one is attacking Jeter. No one. The fact that you perceive it so shows your stubbornness and refusal to believe that other people are not like you, who still do consider Jeter the greatest of the great (and he’s still good. Like I said, no attacks on the guy here, no matter what you want to think).

        I applaud your acceptance that Jeter is not who he once was – of course he’s not. Neither is A-Rod, neither is Posada, neither is Ichiro, nor Albert Pujols, nor (especially not) Ivan Rodriguez. Those last three don’t play on the Yankees (though Pudge did for a bit), so you might not have heard of them, but they are all future Hall of Famers, hands down, and they all have already started to get flack for their lack of performance (that’s already come and gone for Pudge). The only guy who seems to be a freak of nature is Mariano Rivera, who even as he’s faltered has bounced back to remain the greatest closer in the game (yes, he still is, even now. No one is denying that).

        Point is, open your eyes and your mind a little bit and actually try to see things from the writer’s perspective and not your defensive one.

      2. SL says:

        I am sure that there are no MORE people who refuse to accept Jeter’s decay, than there are people like YOU who can’t accept the talent he did have in this sport. You are quite a character, I must say, thus I AM wasting some time with all this here. Funny how you get twisted all out of shape when anyone challenges you on the things you write. I will end it with a question. Does Jeter belong in the hall of fame, yes or no? Answering this question will tell us all we need to know with little need to waste anymore breath or ink on your part.

      3. Jonas A-K says:

        Of course he belongs in the Hall of Fame. I can’t believe I’m mentioning his undeniable greatness for the third time in this conversation. Should I even bother mentioning for the third time that he is compared to Ripken and Banks in this article? I guess not, since either you don’t read it or it seems not to matter to you. But trust me on this: they may not have been Yankees, but they did play Major League Baseball and are revered in the top three or four shortstops to ever play the game of baseball, each better than Jeter, but the fact that he is being compared to the other two by the author indicates that he considers all three Hall of Famers (that includes Jeter. Not sure if I made that clear). Hall of Famers get old and decline too, you know, as shown again again again in my above summary of one of the paragraphs IN THIS ARTICLE.

        In closing: read.

      4. Jonas A-K says:

        One more thing: there was this non-Yankee named Ken Griffey Jr. – I really hope you’ve heard of him – who was considered the greatest to ever play the game from around ’89 to ’99. Then he was a chronic DLer. He’s still got the sweetest swing in the history of the game (followed by Ted Williams, another non-Yankee great known as “the best damn hitter that ever lived”), but he had a few good seasons toward the end of his career that led to his return to Seattle, his original team.

        Griffey was then chastised to the point of being essentially *forced* into retirement. By his own manager, according to some accounts. This for a surefire Hall of Famer once considered better than Willie freakin’ Mays (non-Yankee, greatest ballplayer in history, would’ve been the home run king if not for playing in Candlestick Park, the old home of the San Francisco Giants).

        Read all that and then I defy you to tell me that Jeter gets more undeserved flack than anyone else.

    3. Charles says:

      “One more thing: there was this non-Yankee named Ken Griffey Jr. – I really hope you’ve heard of him…”

      The comparison between Jeter and Griffey doesn’t hold-up. Griffey came back to the Mariners as the team’s DH. He batted .214 with a .323 wOBA in 2009, placing him near the bottom of the league. In 2010, Griffey was batting .185 with ZERO HR’s and a .214 wOBA when Griffey decided to call it quits.

      Ken Griffey, Jr. in 2009 and 2010 is not analogous with Derek Jeter in 2010 and 2011. Derek Jeter was still third in the AL in WAR among shortstops. Jeter is batting .270 with a .308 wOBA in 2011. Jeter is currently towards the bottom of the league when it comes to production among AL shortstops. It’s not, however, like Jeter doesn’t belong in the major leagues. That’s where it had gotten with Ken Griffey, Jr. in 2010.

  11. Paul D says:

    What everybody seems to be missing here is that Jeter did not create his myth- unless he’s paying off the pundits and historians. His situation lends itself to the image those in charge of such things would espouse to the game. His parents have been conspicous from the outset, givimg the world an idea of his stock and creating human interest in that respect. BUt his legend grew with his clutch post season play and his ability to raise his game in those situations. That’s where he is different. Jeter is not a numbers guy, never has been. And now he’s old, for an athlete, and that’s okay. It happens to the best of them. Where I agree with Jason is how a kid might see him. When a public figure, like an athlete that one would look up to, disappoints you, when at a certain age, it is significant. But having to point out that anything created by the media is only two dimensional, to clear thinking and intelligent adults, leaves me at a loss. He’s more guarded than most, but I assure you he is as flawed as me and you and every other professional player you watch. This whole “godlike” status has gotten out of control. Your kids may see him as that but that’s where you have to step in and give them a little perspective. My problem is that I just can’t see how the parents would be as naive as their children. He plays for the joy, glory and, of course, for the money. Of course, he’s selfish. Every professional athlete is selfish. How do you think they push themselves to be the best. I assure you it’s not because they’re thinking of you.

    1. Kurt Spitzner says:

      Very well stated Paul D!

    2. JK says:

      Well put, Paul. Jeter is not evil for being normal, but he is indeed normal. He stretched the A-Rod beef far beyond reasonable limits. He honors Bob Sheppard every at-bat, yet doesn’t attend the man’s funeral (and even tells the media he had no idea where the funeral was held). He’s bestowed the high honor of the All-Star Game by his fans and refuses to play. Again, not tragic. Just human.

  12. Liv says:

    Man…what a refreshing article!!! I give you a lot of credit for having the ba___ to write it. In NY sports, criticizing Jeter is just not done! Finally, someone is not afraid to do so. On another note, if A-Rod had missed the All-Star game because he was “tired” he would have been crucified! The double stadard of Yankee fans is so old now. Finally, I agree with the coverage of the 3000 hit. I got so tired of seeing it and hearing about it that I decided not to listen to WFAN until the season begins again tomorrow. I am now back into listening to audio tapes. Not a bad alternative!!

    1. JK says:

      And thank you, Liv, for having the (pick the organ) to support me. I’m a New Yorker, never afraid to battle ignorance. And, believe it or not, I’m a Yankees fan. Yet the demented, Derek deification has done the impossible – turned me from a Jeter fan to a Jeter detractor.

      1. Jonas A-K says:

        Don’t be deluded, Jason – you haven’t become a Jeter detractor. You’ve become a Jeter realist. But compared to the overwhelming hype and mythic status surrounding Jeter that is touted everywhere relentlessly due to the fact that anyone’s opinion can be made very public thanks to the internet, you *feel* like a Jeter detractor.

        Okay, run-on sentence. My bad. My copy editor would flip if she saw that.

  13. Susan says:

    I am a Yankee fan, but I think the NY media has made WAY TOO much of Jeter the past four to five weeks. It is embarrasing. The world has moved on and we are still talking about the 3000 hit as if it was the discovery of the cure for cancer. It was great, no doubt. But it is just too much now. I also think the prima donna treatment of Jeter is a bit much for me. We have to have Bud Selig and a host of others weigh in and say it is OK for Jeter to miss the All-Star game. Did anyone else who missed the game get this endorsement for staying away? I think the NY media is making folks who don’t think Jeter walks on water really tired of Jeter…which is too bad.

    1. Jonas A-K says:

      Well put. Trust me, as a Mets fan, I hate Jeter as much as the next guy, but as a baseball fan, I respect his ability and I love the game more than anything. The media coverage leading up to the puke-worthy “DJ3K” was just about enough to make me gouge my eyes out, and in my opinion did more bad than good for the magnitude of the accomplishment. It took Jeter homering for that 3,000th hit for me to remember what an accomplishment it was, as the media had hyped it up so much that I didn’t care anymore.

    2. Bobbi says:

      “I think the NY media is making folks who don’t think Jeter walks on water really tired of Jeter”

      That happened a loooong time ago. Years.

    3. Paul D says:

      Bud Selig came out as well as others because of the stature they themselves have created for him. The commisioner could not have chided his “face of the game” publicly- especially after reaching that plateau. He stands out more than the rest because they want him to do so. Of all the players that bowed out of the game, he was the one that was getting killed, maybe rightly so. The rest were an afterthought. C.C., Mo, and A-rod also skipped the game for whatever reason, but they didn’t need any “endorsment,” as you say. They weren’t the ones getting lambasted by the media and fans. It was as if they’d been absolved already. You see this, right? And it’s not just the NY media, it’s league wide. He’s their “golden haired boy.” It’s the great propoganda machine cranking smoothly with a tweak here and there by those that run it.

      1. Jonas Altman-Kurosaki says:

        GAH! For the last time! CC didn’t skip the All-Star Game! He was elected because James Shields was pitching Sunday and couldn’t pitch, but guess who else was pitching Sunday AGAINST Shields? CC! MLB wouldn’t have allowed him to pitch even if he wanted to!

  14. Paul D says:

    It is absolute insanity, Jason. What I read and heard over such a non issue, in my mind, was ridiculous. I believe that it was just a way for the jackals to feed upon the rent of a shield, of flesh finally exposed to their teeth. At least thirteen guys bowed out of the game, if I’m not mistaken. But Jeter was the one that had broken every promise to one’s child. Even that I can understand. If your son or daughter was disappointed, that’s one thing. That’s legitimate. But grown men taking their turns telling the blogging world of their disillusionments or their vindiction of their speculations all along that Derek was the devil who was nothing but money and power hungry. It made me sad and disillusioned with the state of the fan.

    1. JK says:

      Fair enough, Paul. Thanks for the view, and I respect it. And I never said I wasn’t insane.😉

      1. Paul D says:

        I didn’t mean you, man. I thought you were right on the money. He’s a ball player like every other ball player in the sense that he doesn’t set the market for his talents. If some of the commenters have a problem with his income, then how about actors and self made billionaires like Bill Gates, Steve Jobs, ect..,? These people, like Jeter, don’t owe them anything. You want to boycott him, don’t go to the game. Just stop crying to the world about it.

      2. JK says:

        Oh. My bad, Paul. I thought you called me insane. Heh. You made some great points. And what these Jeter worshipers don’t seem to fathom is that he doesn’t do it for them. He plays for pay alone, over $250 million, in fact. That’s just salary. Shall we ponder his endorsements? The only charity in the man that I know of is his foundation. Good to hear from you, bud.

    2. Subway Squawkers says:

      Well, I personally don’t care that Jeter didn’t go to the All-Star Game because he never deserved to be there this year, let alone as a starter, in the first place. That being said, a lot of people voted for him because of him being about to reach 3,000 hits, the very reason he stayed away.

      Here’s the other thing — the flip side of Jeter being put on a pedestal, called an ambassador of the game, treated as such an admired person in the game, is that when he skips the All-Star Game, it’s going to be an issue. Them’s the breaks.

      1. JK says:

        Subway, share with the group Jeter’s latest flaw, vis-a-vis the kid’s tax situation. The thing you shared on your FB page.

  15. Cos says:

    I understand that players get old… I get that Jeter is 37 and is not the same player from over a decade ago. But, A-Rod is a better (all-around) player than Jeter…? Mayber now that Jeter has hit that soft-spot age – perhaps. Maybe I’m stirring up a hornets nest here, but I don’t personally believe that no matter what stats you show me. Jeter is definately leadership material and has (IMO) excelled in that capacity. He’s not what I’d call a ‘selfish’ player – meaning that if the team needs a hit he won’t go for an out of the park shot. And the few times that he did go for more than what was needed, he didn’t just pay for it – rather, the team paid for it. He has (mostly) played fundamental baseball and his performance as a short-stop has been nothing short total effort on his part. His moral has always been iconic and (although a bit of a playboy off the field) has never second-guessed management on any lever – even when I thought he should have. He was not as prone to injuries as much as most players and the few times he was injured, most of those times he picked up right where he left off. He can outplay (even at his current age) anyone who has posted here and could probably teach a few things to the up-and-comers in high school and college ball. Let’s face it, though… Even an older Jeter is better than some newer players.

    Yes, he is older now (dare I say, more seasoned) and he can’t perform as he did say 13 years ago. I would never suggest that he could. But, he just recently made over 3,000 hits! How many players (including A-Rod) can say that they’ve done the same?

    1. Jonas A-K says:

      Derek Jeter is the 28th player to get 3,000 hits in his career. A-Rod is one of seven – yes, only seven – to hit 600 homers, and before his career is through, he should be one of only four to hit 700. There was a time when people assumed that he would hit 800, but his performance over the past few years have all but put that talk to rest. And, as I mentioned in a previous comment, there was a time when A-Rod first came to the Yankees when it was understood that he was the better shortstop, and the only question was if and when Jeter would cede the position to his teammate for the betterment of the team.

      Also, not to beat a dead horse, but Brett Gardner was hitting .320 in the leadoff spot and was a sparkplug for the lineup (and he can run – he’s everything a leadoff guy should be). Jeter isn’t nearly that – so if he’s such an all-team guy, why hasn’t he told Girardi that it’s okay to bat him somewhere else in the lineup?

      1. Get A Grip says:

        “Jeter isn’t nearly that – so if he’s such an all-team guy, why hasn’t he told Girardi that it’s okay to bat him somewhere else in the lineup?”
        Thank You Jonas A-K. I was thinking the same thing when he was on the DLand Gardner was doing such a bang up job.

      2. Steve says:

        The A-Rod vs. Jeter comparisons remind me of the time in the ’60s when an interviewer asked John Lennon whether Ringo was the best drummer in the world. Lennon replied, only half-jokingly, “He isn’t even the best drummer in the Beatles.”

    2. JK says:

      I respect that, COS. But the Jaded Jeter fan regards him with a slobbering reverence that borders on insanity. And, unlike you, they don’t admit that he’s slipping. Worse, I’m the face of evil because I accurately state that he is.

  16. Carol says:

    Jason, I agree with you. I have always been a Jeter fan – but the way the media and most fans totally idolize him is starting to turn me off, big time. He can do no wrong – if A-Rod decided to pass on the ASG because he was “too tired” you can bet he’d be crucified. And I really feel that Jeter himself – not the Yankees – should have rewarded the fan who returned his ball with a substantial reward – perhaps $50K – $75K (Jeter makes like $14 million a year; this guy had no money at all). He deserved much more from Jeter than a photo op, plus a few pieces of signed memorabilia. If the ball wasn’t worth that much to Jeter, then Jeter should have told the fan he could keep it.

    1. Jonas A-K says:

      I agree Carol – and I’ll admit, at first I was ready to harp on A-Rod for jumping on the Jeter/Mariano train for skipping the ASG before it turned out he needed minor surgery. That said, I wasn’t too pleased with Jeter either, though.

      Right now, the very least the Yankees can do for that fan is pay off his extra taxes for him. I don’t know if you’ve seen the recent developments, but after the Yankees gave the kid luxury suite tickets for the rest of the season, the IRS jumped on him and is said to be demanding somewhere between $13-15k in taxes from the poor guy.

    2. JK says:

      Thank you, Carol. I was wondering what happened to women. Maybe one day I will show you some of the things the fairer sex called me. Heh. Thanks again.

  17. Greg says:

    I’m really not sure what your point is. I haven’t talked to anyone that thinks “Jeter is still Jeter” everyone recognized his best days are behind him. Also, fyi, A-Rod plays third base. What is the point of saying that A-Rod could play shortstop better that Jeter?

    1. JK says:

      If you didn’t get my point, Greg, there’s nothing I can say here to make it clearer. I made the A-Rod argument because he was a better shortstop than Jeter when both played the position. You’re welcome to disagree, of course. Also, email me if you want earnest, honest clarification. Seriously.

    2. Jonas A-K says:

      I guess you’re not old enough to remember when A-Rod was unequivocally the best shortstop in baseball – i.e. his entire career until he moved to third base when traded to the Yankees in 2004. Back then, A-Rod was top dog (and deservedly so – he was a 40-40 shortstop, for crying out loud), and Jeter, Nomar and Miguel Tejada were all together in that top tier as well. Red Sox fans quickly noted Nomar’s decline – and that was a guy who was supposed to be something no shortstop this side of A-Rod had ever been.

      1. JK says:

        People have a similar, demented bent toward A-Rod, Jonas. I don’t really get it, but it’s real. He’s a freak, an athletic genius who, yes, took steroids, but had transcendent talent without them.

  18. J says:

    I love you, Jason. Thank you for this!

    1. JK says:

      Thank you, J. Couldn’t give us the whole name?😉

  19. Subway Squawkers says:

    Ah,.Jason, grasshopper, you’re learning about the rabid Derek Jeter acolytes.. Even the most mild comments about their hero are met by such rejoinders as “Shut up, he’s got five rings,” “Shut up, you never played the game, ” “Shut up, you’re just jealous,” or “Shut up, what about the flip play/Mr. November/the dive into the stands/intangilbes/clutchness.” Seems like you got a bit of each today.

    1. JK says:

      Indeed. But what I can’t fathom is the level of delusion. All kids have heroes. As I said many times, mine were Muhammad Ali, Reggie Jackson, and Franco Harris. I was sick from seeing Harris in a Seahawks uniform, and even more so watching Ali lose to chumps. But I eventually became an adult and let go of certain neuroses. This Jeter thing is like nothing I’ve ever seen.

  20. Kevin says:

    So you mean sports fans talk and react with emotion and not always with logic? This is very enlightening.

  21. JK says:

    Thanks for stopping by, Chuck. If you hate it, me, my perspective, you’re welcome to turn the page. Or we may debate privately, but you won’t because you’re trying to show off, sniping from the anonymity of your cubicle. In either case, enjoy your Derek Dementia, since you really made no argument.

    1. Charles says:

      “In either case, enjoy your Derek Dementia, since you really made no argument.”

      If “Derek Dementia” is really the best quip you can come up with, I can’t say it would make a fun, interesting debate. I mean, congratulations with your cutting-edge commentary on Derek Jeter. This is the only place you’ll hear such in-your-face, tell-it-like-it-is analysis.

      1. JK says:

        Whatever you prefer, Chuck. Enjoy your day. It’s your world, indeed.

      2. Jonas A-K says:

        Still not showing that you know anything to back up your statements, bud. Maybe throw in a counterargument or two so you don’t just seem like you’re hating just because someone went against your beliefs, but this whole article was backed up by stats, facts etc. and all you’ve got are hollow insults and a love for Jeter so inherently blind that you should be taking a seeing-eye dog with you to games.

      3. Charles says:

        “Still not showing that you know anything to back up your statements, bud.”

        My honest, objective analysis is that Jason Keidel isn’t a very good writer and he makes an unsound, illogical argument. If the entire point is that Derek Jeter is a washed-up scrub, then HE DOESN’T BELONG IN THE ALL STAR GAME.

        Had Derek Jeter played in the All Star Game, bloggers like Keidel, who gain attention by making hackneyed insults about famous sports figures, would be citing all of these same stats to show why it’s a joke that Jeter is in the All Star Game at the expense of a younger, more talented ballplayer.

        I’ve seen this article for a decade now: “Derek Jeter isn’t as great as everyone thinks he is, and anyone who challenges me is only doing so because he’s a Yankees fan and is, therefore, blind to reality.”

        This is the same whining we’ve seen for a decade now. Yes, there are Yankees fan for whom Jeter can do no wrong. However, there are also Yankee haters who are going to use any excuse they can find to whine and complain about Derek Jeter and the Yankees.

        Jason Keidel isn’t whining about the Yankees because he’s offended Jeter skipped the All Star Game. Jason Keidel is whining about the Yankees because, apparently, this really was the best he could do.

      4. JK says:

        You really need a reality check and a life, Chuck. Your indignity is bursting through your thin skin. Perhaps you can tell us your relationship to Derek Jeter because this debate has rendered you incoherent. You’re more than welcome to disagree with my premise, or even to hate my logic, but to say my piece is a “mess” is just childish. I’m quite happy to compare my command of the written word to anyone you’ve ever met.

      5. Charles says:

        “You really need a reality check and a life, Chuck. Your indignity is bursting through your thin skin.”

        You’re the one with the thin skin. Otherwise, why would you spend all this time obsessing over what I, a nobody, think about your amateurish “analysis.”

        “Perhaps you can tell us your relationship to Derek Jeter because this debate has rendered you incoherent.”

        No, it hasn’t. I’ve made my point perfectly clearly. Sadly, you continue to reveal that you don’t have anything of substance behind your whiny, unoriginal criticisms of Derek Jeter. Rather than facing-up to the inferior and illogical nature of your argument, you assume the posture that the only reason somebody would dare to criticize you is that their love for Jeter and the Yankees blinds them to the reality that Jeter is old and on the decline.

        Well, if Jeter is old and on the decline, why do you want him at the All Star Game?

        You can’t really answer that one, can you? You know that had Jeter attended the All Star Game, you’d complain about that, too.

        “You’re more than welcome to disagree with my premise, or even to hate my logic, but to say my piece is a ‘mess’ is just childish.”

        Please do accept my apologies. You do set such a wonderful example when it comes to mature, adult behavior. Of the 10,000 articles I’ve read that pointlessly whine about Derek Jeter, yours is by far the most precocious and erudite.

        “I’m quite happy to compare my command of the written word to anyone you’ve ever met.”

        I’ve definitely seen worse writing, but I don’t see anything special in either your style or subject matter. What dooms this piece isn’t your command of language, but the utter unoriginality and illogical nature of your argument. (Well, that and the awkward analogies and misplaced metaphors.)

      6. JK says:

        Again, Chuck, pick a name – a friend, foe, anyone – and let us compare. I didn’t think so. I know more about writing than you and everyone you know combined. Trust me. You now have my permission to leave. Be well.

      7. Charles says:

        “Again, Chuck, pick a name – a friend, foe, anyone – and let us compare. I didn’t think so.”

        This is great. Not only am I to accept your hackneyed opinions regarding Derek Jeter, but I’m also supposed to accept that you are the best writer that I’ve ever encountered.

        You’ll have to pardon me for not thinking you’re half the writer you imagine yourself to be. Your argument makes no sense. You’re arguing that Derek Jeter is old and washed-up. Since he’s old and washed-up, Jeter doesn’t belong in the All Star Game.

        Had he played in the All Star Game, Jeter wouldn’t have deserved to be an All Star. Jeter declined to attend the All Star Game, and people like you whine about that, too.

        Were you a good writer, you could have explained that contradiction. You can’t do it, because you’re really not that great at what you do, your opinion of yourself aside. You now substitute this silly bravado for a basic lack of substance in your piece.

        FYI, both my girlfriend’s parents, my best friend, and my late brother all write, (or wrote), far better than you. I’ve seen worse writing than your own, but you’re nothing special.

  22. Charles says:

    This article is an embarrassment that ought be titled, “The Generic, Uninformed Idiot’s Perspective.” It’s a collage of stock criticisms of Jeter, including ridiculous proclamations like, “A-Rod is five times the player Jeter ever was.” (Saying he’s twice the player Jeter is is still an exaggeration.)

    The pointless references to Grace Slick and Shakespeare do not save this piece from being a complete mess. It’s a terrible argument, terribly made.

    1. Frank Reilly says:

      Jeter should have been in Arizona. Unless there is more ratiionale for his ASG absence, , he has in my opinion made a mistake in judgement. However, with that said, this article is to ber nice, way off base.

    2. Bronxilla says:

      Yankee fans can’t get past the glare of Jeter’s image. That’s why some of his peers vote him as underrated. Look at his stats for the last two years – average, OPS, RISP, dp grrund outs, total chances – they are all down. There’s no denying that he was one of the greatest shortstops ever, or that he is a great guy or that he is a team leader and helped the Yankees win all those World Series. Put that aisde and look at his last two years. That’s all anyone is saying – his last two years have been mediocre. Your mythical god does not hjave to die for that.

      1. Jonas A-K says:

        Well said.

      2. JK says:

        Bravo, Bronx! Yet when I say it I somehow morph into the man who killed Santa Claus.

    3. Jonas A-K says:

      Great constructive criticism!

      I know how frustrating it is for eeeeevery article to compare Jeter’s ability at 37 to Ripken’s and Banks’ abilities at 37. How generic indeed… And about A-Rod v. Jeter? Consider that when A-Rod first came over, the conversation was solely centered around how A-Rod was the better defensive shortstop and when Jeter would graciously cede the position to him for the betterment of the team. As for offensive numbers, sure, Jeter’s career average is 11 points higher than A-Rod’s (.313 vs .302), but A-Rod has 626 career HRs and 1883 career RBI (including at least 30 and 100, respectively, each of the past *13* years). Jeter’s numbers in those respective categories are 237 and 1159. Not to mention that A-Rod was once a 40-40 player – something Jeter never could’ve even dreamed of.

      Just saying, Charles. Baseball fans look at facts, not feelings.

      1. JK says:

        He’s not interested in facts, Jonas. But you made a splendid argument, if that’s any consolation. Heh.

      2. Charles says:

        “…compare Jeter’s ability at 37 to Ripken’s and Banks’ abilities at 37.”

        Fine. Derek Jeter wasn’t as great a shortstop as baseball legends Cal Ripken, Jr. and Ernie Banks.

        “And about A-Rod v. Jeter?”

        OK. Derek Jeter is not as good as Alex Rodriguez.

        Now, let’s compare him to the other 1000+ shortstops in baseball history.

        http://www.fangraphs.com/leaders.aspx?pos=ss&stats=bat&lg=all&qual=y&type=6&season=2011&month=0&season1=1903&ind=0

        As you’ll see Derek Jeter ranks eighth all-time in WAR (Wins Above Replacement) among major league shortstops since 1903.

        Derek Jeter is not as great as Honus Wagner.
        Derek Jeter is not as great as Alex Rodriguez.
        Derek Jeter is not as great as Cal Ripken.
        Derek Jeter is not as great as Luke Appling.
        Derek Jeter is not as great as Arky Vaughn.
        Derek Jeter is not as great as Ernie Banks.
        Derek Jeter is not as great as Robin Yount.

        I’d also say Jeter is not as great Ozzie Smith, whose defense was so strong that it impacted the game.

        Derek Jeter is might not be of the best nine shortstops in history. But he is probably one of the best 10-15 shortstops in history.

        People don’t just say Derek Jeter is good because they suffer from dementia, or some other form of mental illness. Derek Jeter really is great. I understand he’s in decline, but the man has had a great career.

  23. Kurt Spitzner says:

    I think he should have gone to and played in the AS game without a second thought.Now that he has achieved what he and most of the rest of the world wanted its time to do whatever is necessary to win ballgames,and if that means being moved down in the order then so be it.
    As usual this was a well thought out and well stated article that gives a detailed look into the situation at hand.When are they going to put this guy on the radio so we can enjoy his wit while on the road and at work?

  24. Steve says:

    Most players – indeed most things in this world – that are accorded godlike status by some are usually not quite as great as their supporters believe but not as bad as their detractors do. These comments contain a perfect sample of those attitudes. Is he the greatest SS of all time? Doubtful. But is he simply, as another poster implied, Craig Biggio in a Yankee uniform, who, by implication, would be thought of no more highly than the likes of a Biggio if he played somewhere out in flyover land? No, he’s not that either. He’s a terrific player who would have been great in any environment but also benefited from being in the perfect time and place to support his talents.

    1. JK says:

      Wonderfully put, Steve. Thank you for this.

      1. Steve says:

        Thanks, Jason. I think a lot of the vehemence and passion fans have invested in something as relatively meaningless in the larger world as the career arc of Derek Jeter are less a matter of statistics and salary than of the nerves this story touches – and it touches a lot of the big ones – aging and the loss of power; money; greed; envy. In that context your Shakespearean reference was not at all out of place in this saga.

    2. JK says:

      No doubt, Steve. And, obviously, my goal was to irritate that legion of frothing Jeter fans, provide a symbolic slap back to reality. But in my more diplomatic missives, I’ve said that it’s not Jeter they love but rather what he represents – their youth, a time when they thought good times were eternal. That tone didn’t take, so I had to get a little more aggressive. I’m so glad you dig it and have responded. Feel free to email me anytime.

  25. Bronxilla says:

    Keidel is right. The numbers don’t lie. When Jeter was on the DL they went 15 and 4. In his first week back they went 3 and 3. He is no longer a legitimate lead off hitter nor a second place hiiter. His range is limited and some of the balls he doesn’t get to become runners who eventually score. These are not criticisms; they are facts. I don’t know of any athlete who is idolized the way Jeter is; he has been on a pedestal like no other. That was perhaps justified unitl two years ago because of his play and his character. Jeter himself refuses to acknowledge the aging process. I remember when Mike Piazza began to decline and he talked about the extra care he needed to recuparate from a day of catching. Not so Jeter.

    1. JK says:

      Thank you, Bronx. You know how jaded people become when their heroes perish. I felt that way about Muhammad Ali. But I was a child then. As adults, we need to know better.

  26. Robert says:

    Jason Keidel? Who the hell is that? I suspect he spent most of his school days hiding from the kids that routinely took his lunch money. Get a clue Jason!

    1. JK says:

      I’m just a fool with a column, Robert. Thanks for stopping by.

    2. Scott says:

      I think he has an excellent clue, despite your assertion. And if he did in fact have his lunch money taken, it was probably by a guy like you. Wait! “guys’ like you. Judging from your question of who Keidel is and your need for some sort of support from this reading audience, I am sure you would have needed support as well to take a kids lunch money. I may not be right becuase I don’t know you, but I would bet I am.

      1. JK says:

        Thank you, Scott. You can understand why I can’t respond in kind to him. I’d seem like the precise thug he’s trying to be. And my lunch money was never an issue. Heh. How’s life, bud?

      2. Scott says:

        You are welcome J.K. It is difficult to write in this day and age I would imagine with so many people eager to be critical. Correct, you can not defend yourself for every article you publish and for every word that is part of an article. Your articles are excellent and unique and thoughtful and a pleasure to read. I always look forward to reading them. I am sure many others do too. That is what you key in on. Have a good evening. Many thanks for saying hello.

      3. Scott says:

        P.S. I never had my lunch money taken either. But then again, I had 5 brothers and five sisters (and the sisters are tougher than the brothers). I couldn’t give my lunch money away if I tried. One of the few benefits of growing up in a large family.

  27. J.C. says:

    You lost all credability when you quoted the mom from Austin Powers. “Men want to be him and women want to be with him.” By the way, don’t hate on a man who has done so much for this game. Everyone gets older..you can’t beat that. Instead, celebrate him at the end of his career for what he is…probably the best SS of all time.

    1. Brian Kalinka says:

      Clearly you’ve never heard of Honus Wagner

      1. JK says:

        Thank you, Brian.

    2. JK says:

      I quoted Shakespeare, sir. Not Austin Powers. Please read the entire piece.

    3. Jonas A-K says:

      You lost all credibility when you misspelled “credibility.”

      1. JK says:

        Heh. You can understand why I couldn’t correct him, Jonas. It would have seemed horribly condescending from me. But thank you!

  28. Sully says:

    How dare you say Derek’s stats are slipping? He will play for another 15 years AND EACH YEAR HE WILL GET BETTER!

    3,000 hits?
    Try 5,000!!!!!

    1. JK says:

      Ha! Keep it going, Sully!

    2. Liv says:

      Delusion.

      1. Jonas A-K says:

        More like sarcasm… I hope😉

    3. JK says:

      Yeah, Jonas, it was sarcasm. Sully is on the right side of this. He’s got a good blog, too. A very funny guy. He was calling out Jeter, too, but was bashed for being a jaded Bostonian. He didn’t have the geographical prerogative to speak on the matter. It’s nonsense, but that’s what people think. Likewise, I can’t comment on Varitek or Ortiz.

  29. Nick DiPalo says:

    My problem is not with Derek’s diminishing skills. Players get old. I get that. My problem is what seems like an obsession in the NY media to point out almost daily that he’s old and not the player he once was. And the brain dead, shut-in callers on the FAN?! OMG! You would think they all had a personal relationship with the man the way they all know how he thinks and feels. Go outside and get some sun.
    As a Yankee fan, I had no problem with Jeter skipping the ASG. I’d rather see him rested for the stretch run. After all, as we all know, old people need their rest.

    1. JK says:

      I completely respect your view, Nick. My beef is not with Jeter as much as those who act like angry infants when I state facts. I can accept if from actual kids, not those my age.

    2. Get A Grip says:

      No Nick, YOU and people like you are the real problem. Jeter held a gun to the head of Yankee management this past off season, demanding money (that really no athlete should make, but let’s humor for the sake of the argument) that should only be accorded to superstars in their prime, not aging has- beens. If people would stop attending games and purchasing concessions at the obscene prices that are being charged, then maybe we could get back to a more sane place, where people could take their families to a baseball game without having to take out a second mortgage on their homes. Grow up already would ya.
      And by the way, you are a Yankee fan? When did you become a Yankee fan? I became a Yankee fan, and went to a lot of games, in the late 60’s and early 70’s, when the Yankees were terrible. But you know what, the prices were inexpensive and despite the teams always losing, we STILL had a great time at the ballpark, and none of the players were starving either. They just weren’t grossly overpaid prima donnas.

  30. Jonathan Beatrice says:

    I’m a Met fan, and I voted for Jose Reyes, and I have NO problem with him not playing a game that I’m not going to watch just to show his appreciation. I’d rather he get better for the games that count.

    I’m 37. I can still cycle around the five boroughs of New York in one day. But, I will never go 5 for 5 at Yankee Stadium in a hyped-up high pressure situation and almost hit for the cycle in the process, especially after punishing his body for 30 years of his life practicing his skills in a very hard sport in order to reach the highest possible eschelon of it, WITHOUT steroids.

    I hate the Yankees with a passion, but I will be looking forward to seeing DJ’s plaque in Cooperstown and watching you eat it.

    1. JK says:

      Thank you for the comment, Jonathan. Folks may not believe this after reading the piece, but I’ve been a Yankees fan since 1977. But there comes a time to let go. This is that time for Jeter fans of a certain (my) age.

    2. Jonas A-K says:

      I’m not sure you read the whole article, Jonathan. It’s clear that Jason studies the game, knows *facts* and believes that Jeter will absolutely be a Hall-of-Famer. If you’d read any further than the first paragraph or two, you’d notice that he brought up the performances of Cal Ripken and Ernie Banks at Jeter’s age – both very much Hall of Famers who had more talent than Jeter (both power AND contact). That Jason compared Jeter to Ripken and Banks shows that he considers Jeter equal to the other two in at least one category: that all *three* are Hall of Fame shortstops.

  31. Brian Kalinka says:

    These are the same fans who said the Yankees “needed” to give Jeter whatever money he wanted on a new contract, then a month ago turned around and said the Yankees should trade for Jose Reyes, then acted like he was the greatest shot stop of all time (and probably never heard of Honus Wagner) when he hit 3k. News Flash, Craig Biggio did it too. It’s a great feat but it doesn’t glorify you.

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