Posts Tagged ‘Derek Jeter’

Bye. Or, as Michael Kay would say, “See ya.”

Sunday, September 28th, 2014
Photo: Christopher Anderson/New York Magazine

Photo: Christopher Anderson/New York Magazine

Well, today’s game was truly the end of a great career. And Jeter did it in style with an RBI hit, a lot of hugs for his teammates, a few words for Clay Bulhholz before coming off the field, a tip of the cap to the Red Sox players and a wave to the fans. I thought the Red Sox, both as an organization and as a fan base, did a beautiful job with their farewell. Not only did they trot out their most esteemed sports captains for the pre-game ceremony but the Fenway Faithful cheered and stood at the end as if Jeter were their own. I was very moved.

It seems strangely OK that it was the end of the 2014 season too. It’s time for the Yankees to regroup and figure out where to go from here. There’s been a lot written about the return of A-Rod in recent days so his presence and its attendant baggage will be inevitable, but Michael Pineda gives me a lot of hope that the starting pitching will be in very good shape. (Tanaka is still a question mark for me. I don’t trust the health of that arm. I hope I’m wrong. Ditto: CC for a bunch of reasons.) I enjoyed watching Jose Pirela, both at the plate and at second base. I don’t quite get why he wasn’t called up sooner, despite roster issues, since he led the International League in hitting (or something like that), but I hope he sticks around. Maybe they could move him to shortstop because Drew won’t contribute anything to the offense and if I’m Cashman I don’t re-sign him.

Speaking of Cashman, he’ll have a full plate this off-season as usual but maybe with more urgency than ever. Two years without a postseason? The horror if you’re the Steinbrenners. George must be fuming. Do they even keep Cashman? Is it conceivable that there’s another GM out there who looks more enticing? Or will they stick with the status quo? Girardi’s alleged tirade in the clubhouse on Thursday could have been a manifestation not just of his own anger but of that of his bosses.

Getting back to Jeter, it’ll be interesting to see where his life takes him. He’s already dipped into the book publishing world with his own imprint at Simon & Schuster. He’s expressed interest in owning a team but in the shorter term it’s more likely he’ll invest his time and money in media-driven enterprises. I have to admit I envy Jeter right now. Most people retire with modest goals – taking up a hobby, traveling, figuring how to live on Social Security and cope with health problems. He’s young and fit and fabulously wealthy, and the world is his oyster; he can do whatever the hell he wants. Nice. As I said, I look forward to seeing what direction his life takes.

No, the Yankees won’t be the same without him, but iconic players have long come and gone in this franchise and someday, hopefully soon, another will come our way. I look forward to that too.

In the meantime, unless there’s something newsworthy in Yankeeville, I guess the Confessions blog will go on its usual hiatus for the off-season. Or not…….

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Straight out of a Hollywood Script

Thursday, September 25th, 2014

Jeter final game in Bronx

All I kept thinking after Robertson blew the game in the ninth was….A Jeter walkoff? Maybe? Possibly?

Well, OK, I also thought what a shame it was that Kuroda got screwed yet again. Talk about a hard luck pitcher. He threw a brilliant game and could have finished it, but I got that you’re supposed to go to your closer, blah blah.

The main attraction was The Captain and how the night would end for him. I desperately didn’t want him to strike out or hit into a DP in the bottom of the inning. And I would have carried a lifelong grudge against Showalter if he’d intentionally walked him. And then came that familiar Jeterian swing followed by sheer joy – his and mine and everyone else’s. He looked so happy, didn’t he? When he jumped in the air arms raised in celebration, he was a rookie again mobbed by his teammates. And the presence of Andy, Bernie, Jorge and Mo was icing on the cake.

He still seemed dazed during his post-game press conference, admitting that when he stood there at shortstop in the top of the ninth he was saying, “Please don’t hit the ball to me” – very un-Jeter-like but totally understandable.

I loved seeing his mom get all teary, loved watching him pick up his little nephew, loved that he had his girlfriend there but wouldn’t give her the full PDA treatment in front of everybody (very Jeter-like). Oh, and I loved that the Yankees won the game. :)

So it’s on to Boston for the finish to the 2014 season – anticlimactic for sure. My friends here are excited about the Dodgers’ prospects in the playoffs and I’ll throw my support to them. But in the meantime, I’ll let tonight linger in my mind. It was magical.

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Tanaka!

Sunday, September 21st, 2014

masahiro+tanaka1

Wow. It was good to see him again. I only saw highlights of the finale against the Blue Jays, but the guy is beyond amazing. I kept thinking about what might have been had he not gotten injured and instead pitched throughout the full season. It wouldn’t have helped the Yankees score runs, but it could have given them just enough wins to squeak through to the postseason. I hope he doesn’t feel any after effects from going 5+ innings.

Watching Jeter have such a good homestand also doesn’t mean much as far as the team’s fortunes, but for his sake I’m glad he’s going out with a bang not a whimper. He gave the weekend crowds something to cheer about. Audrey? I think you were going to the game on Saturday, right? Tell us how it went despite the loss. It looked like a love fest for the Captain.

So now we’re winding down to the end. There’s lots of chatter about who’ll stay next season and who’ll go, but for right now it’s all about Jeter and getting through The Goodbye. It won’t be easy, but it’s time.

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At Least There Was Something to Celebrate

Sunday, September 7th, 2014
Photo: William Perlman/The Star-Ledger

Photo: William Perlman/The Star-Ledger

Or should I say “someone.” The Yankees brought out a veritable Who’s Who of stars for Derek Jeter Day at the Stadium, including members of the Yanks. I did miss Andy Pettitte, but it’s always good to see Jorge, Mo and Bernie. I’m still not sure why this ceremony wasn’t saved for the last home game of the season, but it was a fitting tribute. Having Cal Ripken there was an especially nice touch. And yikes Tim Raines is large these days.

As for the game against the Royals, well, there’s nothing to say that hasn’t been said during the season. It was the same old same old: good pitching, no hitting. And aside from yesterday’s win, the series was futility in general. The only upside is that both Pineda and Green look like great candidates for the rotation next year. Now if they could get some bats and be done with the dead wood so to speak, they’d be in business.

 

 

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A Happy Ending

Thursday, September 4th, 2014

headley_yankees walkoff

Mark Teixeira made it a tie ballgame in the bottom of the ninth against the Red Sox tonight, and then Chase Headley sent the Yanks to a game win and a series win. I was on my feet cheering.

The Yankees may not win another series this season, who knows, but all I wanted for them was to get out of their offensive doldrums and play entertaining baseball and they did. The Red Sox are only a shell of their former selves, except for Ortiz who just keeps hitting bombs year after year, but taking two of three at home was fun anyway. I loved how excited the players got tonight after Headley’s walkoff, like a bunch of little kids. So cute.

As for Headley himself, he was a nice pickup. I wonder what’ll happen to him when A-Rod comes back next year (theoretically). Come to think of it, how will the Yankees deal with A-Rod coming back? (Hal said he’s looking forward to it. Yeah, sure.) In the meantime, Headley has played a solid third base and had a few timely hits.

The weekend series against the Royals should be interesting, with Sunday’s Jeter Farewell ceremony certain to be a tear jerker. I still can’t imagine the Yankees without him, but it’s clear that it’s the right time for him to head off into his new life. I have no doubt that he’ll succeed in whatever arena he pursues. He’s The Natural.

 

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Eating with Jeter?

Tuesday, August 26th, 2014
Photo: Diamond Dishes

Photo: Diamond Dishes

Just got this release from Steiner Sports. If anyone wants to pony up and have a farewell lunch with the Captain, here’s all the info. Part of me thinks the commercialization of Jeter’s last season is way over the top. The other part thinks the luncheon is a sweet way to say goodbye. You decide.

For Immediate Release 

The Captain’s Farewell: Derek Jeter Live at the Hudson Theatre Presented by Steiner Sports on Monday, September 22 New York, August 26 –

One of the greatest Yankees, as well as one of baseball’s best, Derek Jeter, will be saying goodbye to the game at season’s end. What better way to bid him farewell than by attending “The Captain’s Farewell: Derek Jeter Live at the Hudson Theatre” hosted by Brandon Steiner and Steiner Sports.

On Monday, September 22, from 12 noon to 2:00 pm, just three days before Jeter’s final home game at Yankee Stadium, he will be joined by Brandon Steiner at the historic Hudson Theatre in the Millennium Hotel (145 W 44th St, New York, NY 10036) in midtown Manhattan for a special event and impactful Q&A that will commemorate his great career and time with the New York Yankees.

Tickets start at $149. The packages are all listed at the end of the release. For more information and tickets go onto http://www.steinersports.com/events.html 

Event: The Captain’s Farewell: Derek Jeter Live at the Hudson Theatre 

Location: Hudson Theatre at the Millennium Hotel 

Address: 145 W 44th St, New York, NY 10036

Venue Website: http://www.millenniumhotels.com/usa/millenniumbroadwaynewyork/meetings/hudson-theater.html 

Transport: The 1, 2, 3, 7, N, Q, R, and Shuttle train stop at 42nd Street/Times Square, which leaves you three blocks from the hotel. 

Event Date: Monday, September 22, 2014 

Event Time: 12:00 noon to 2:00 pm 

Event Prices: Starting at $149; VIP packages that include a luncheon and memorabilia also available.  

Steiner Sports Contact: Steiner Sports Events, 914-307-1037, or email jwechsler@steinersports.com 

Athletes in attendance: Yankees shortstop Derek Jeter and a few surprise Yankees alumni 

For more information: Visit http://www.steinersports.com/events.html 

Living Social Packages 

The Balcony: One Balcony Ticket to Derek Jeter Q&A Including One Jeter Subway Sign One $25 Steiner Sports Gift Card(does not include Luncheon) Price $149 

The Mezzanine: One Mezzanine Ticket to Derek Jeter Q&A One Jeter Canvas Print One $25 Steiner Sports Gift Card (Does not include Luncheon) Price: $249 

Clutch Package with Product: Two Tickets to the luncheon and Jeter Q&A One Photo op with Derek Jeter for you and your guest One Limited Edition Derek Jeter Signed piece $2,500 per package

Clutch Package (without Product) Two Tickets to the luncheon and Jeter Q&A One Photo op with Derek Jeter for you and your guests $2,000 per package

 

 

 

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The Sweep Was Sweet

Monday, July 21st, 2014

Broom_icon.svg[4]And unexpected. The Reds came into the Stadium having played well, so I hoped for the best from the Yankees but…well, I certainly was surprised by the sweep. Dare I say that Phelps has grown into the job and is looking less like a mere fill-in and more like a guy who can stay in the rotation for awhile? And dare I say that McCarthy may have been a good pickup after all, though two starts aren’t much of a sample size? And dare I say that Kuroda has gas left in the tank despite not getting the win?

The Yankees’ infield defense (I’m looking at you, Brian Roberts) is still suspect and needs tightening up. But maybe, just maybe, the offense is coming around. It’ll never be a Bronx Bombers type offense and I miss that, but Ellsbury continues to impress and Jeter seems renewed and Beltran and McCann have been contributing more.

Bottom line: it’s more fun to watch games when the Yankees win than when they lose so I hope they keep this trend up. Whether they have a legitimate shot to make it into the postseason, as opposed to turning 2014 simply into a farewell tour for Jeter, is still an open question.

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On to the Second Half

Friday, July 18th, 2014

130607_1224446883840_full

Hard to believe how fast this summer is going, but I’m sure I say that every year. It just feels as if I was just writing about spring training and here we are post All-Star Game, which, by the way, I don’t really watch except to see how any Yankees players fare. This one was all about Jeter and rightfully so, beginning with the Nike commercial, which I think should win a Clio award. Just fabulous. The tributes to the captain were equally memorable, and he handled them with his usual modesty, saying exactly the right things with a touch of humor. I thought the Wainwright foot-in-mouth “controversy” was silly (the NL pitcher said he threw Jeter a meatball in that first at bat, then claimed he was joking), but Jeter deflected it perfectly. I do have to admit that the gifting of Jeter in every city as part of the same sort of farewell tour Mo had is getting old. When did this tradition take hold and will it now be expected for every popular player who’s announced he’s retiring? Or just the potential HOFers?

Bigger questions involve the Yankees. I had dinner with a diehard fan the other night and he’s convinced we’re heading into the “Horace Clarke years” of mediocrity. He also thinks Cashman should be fired for signing old war horses like Beltran and Roberts and just bring up the kids and see how they do. He’s adamant that we shouldn’t trade the farm for somebody like Cliff Lee.

Will the Yankees make the postseason? Only if the rest of the division can’t get it together. We just aren’t a very good team right now with all the injuries and limitations. I hope Shane Greene proves to be the real thing, but two great starts don’t make a career. I need to see more. I hope Kuroda staves off fatique and age. I hope Phelps finishes strong. But then there’s the offense. Remember the days when we hit homer after homer? Ten runs weren’t rare. Now we’re lucky if we scratch out three.

So we’ll see. In the meantime, I’ll enjoy watching Jeter for as long as his season goes and anticipate the final goodbye from the last of the Core Four.

 

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Get Up Close and Personal With the Captain!

Monday, June 16th, 2014

How’s this for an off-day offer: spend a game day with Jeter!

Seriously!

It’s all part of his Turn 2 Foundation, and it’s one cool opportunity for Yankee fans, so listen up. The Turn 2 Foundation has announced a raffle – a ticket costs as little as $10 – to benefit the Foundation, and here’s what the lucky winner gets. Ready?

  • Private pre-game lunch for 4 with Jeter at one of his favorite NY restaurants
  • A ride with him to the ballpark
  • VIP behind-the-scenes tour of the Stadium courtesy of the Yankees
  • Pre-game batting practice status in front of the Yankee dugout
  • Autographing time with members of the team as they take the field
  • 4 seats in Jeter’s private suite

Additional information can be found here.

What a deal, right? And it’s all for a great cause. Who’s in?

woman raises hand

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Bruised, Battered But Still Kicking

Thursday, May 29th, 2014

Jeter St Louis

Maybe the fans in St. Louis are the nicest people in America. Not only did they give Jeter an ovation practically every time he took a breath, but, according to Sterling and Waldman, they came over to Yankee fans dining at a local restaurant after a Yankees win and congratulated them with a “Nice game.” If only we saw that sort of behavior everywhere.

But I digress. What’s most amazing is that the Yankees are still standing and the road trip ended on a winning note. All this despite the absence of Beltran and Teixeira, despite the slump and benching last night of Solarte, despite the use of McCann at first base and despite the makeshift pitching staff. Yes, Tanaka notched his first loss in forever and the Yankees defense was sloppy at best, and the offense was forced to play “small ball” (I do miss the homers), but if it weren’t for Toronto’s miraculous run of wins the Yanks would be on or near the top of the heap.

Do I think the team can go patchwork into the rest of the season this way? Probably not. Guys need to come back healthy and holes need to be filled. But I was pretty impressed by this road trip. The boys did us proud in the Midwest. They deserve this day off.

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