Farewell, Captain...See You in the Hall of Fame
Written by Bryana Martinez, Senior Writer
From tweets on Twitter to captions on Snapchat, “Farewell Captain” was the trending topic on all social networks late in this past baseball season, as Derek Jeter played his last games as a professional baseball player for the New York Yankees.
Since the day Jeter was drafted into Major League Baseball, he has been playing with the New York Yankees as their starting shortstop. He is their all-time career leader in hits. He ended his career with 3,465 hits (6th all-time in Major League Baseball history), 544 doubles, 358 stolen bases, 11,195 at bats, 12,602 plate appearances, reached base 4,716 times and played in 2,747 games.
Thanks to Jeter’s hitting, fielding, baserunning, and good leadership skills, he is considered a big part of the Yankees’ 5 championship teams from the late 1990s to the early 2000s. Jeter has been selected to play in the All-Star Game a total of 14 times. He has won five Gold Glove awards, five Silver Slugger awards, Two Hank Aaron awards, and a Roberto Clemente Award.
Jeter will always be remembered for being clutch. Whether it was a game winning home run in the month of November, or his flip to home plate to throw a runner from the Oakland A’s out in a playoff game, or his lunging into the crowd to snag a foul ball away from the Red Sox, every Yankee fan has their own favorite Jeter play. He was the glue to 5 World Series championships.
Derek Jeter was a 20-year Major League Baseball player, but he was also a great asset to the community. In 1996, Jeter started the Turn 2 Foundation. He stated this foundation because his favorite Yankee, Dave Winfield, had a foundation that promoted health and education, that inspired Jeter to want to do the same, when “he made it.” Jeter came up with the name Turn 2 for many reasons. It was referred to in baseball as a double play, it was also Dereks’ uniform number; however, the most important reason for its name was because the foundation gives the youth a place to “turn to.” The whole purpose of Turn 2 is to help young people turn away from drugs and alcohol and change their lifestyles into healthy ones.
During this last season, Jeter received numerous standing ovations in his games since the moment he announced his retirement. In Miller Park, the Yankees went up against the Milwaukee Brewers where the sold out crowd of 43,544 people constantly showed their love for Jeter. He got three standing ovations from the crowd throughout the night. The first one during the pregame ceremonies, then during his first and last at bats. According to MLB.com, “The love,respect and admiration of the crowd was very impressive.”
Jeter ended his career in Yankee Stadium the only way he knew how -- by getting a hit in the clutch and being the hero. Coming up to bat in a tied game in the bottom of the ninth, Jeter singled home the winning run in his final Yankee Stadium at bat. The crowd cheered for Jeter who did a curtain call while accepting hugs and handshakes from former teammates Mariano Rivera, Bernie Williams, and Tino Martinez.
It was the perfect ending for The Captain. Next stop is the Baseball Hall of Fame.