Derek Jeter Announces Retirement At End of 2014 Season
The announcement has been made, the table is set; Derek Jeter, face of the New York Yankees for 19 seasons, and one of the greatest shortstops of all time, will retire at the end of the 2014 season. Jeter, every season, generally arrives at training camp early, to get a jump on spring training down at the New York Yankees practice facility in Tampa Bay, FL.
But this Wednesday was different – out of the ordinary to say the least. Instead of fielding grounders and warming up his swing, and then joining his teammates in daily exercises, he did something different. He made a phone call. A phone call doesn’t sound like much, but sometimes, even the smallest things you do in this life could lead to the largest changes. Jeter’s phone call was to majority owner, Hal Steinbrenner, to say that he had come to a fateful decision: that the 2014 season would be his last season in the major leagues. Nobody in the Yankees front office saw the decision coming.
Hours later, Jeter made his decision public, posting a 14-paragraph letter to the fans on his official Facebook page, that began with a simple thank you. “I’ve experienced so many defining moments in my career,” he went on to say. “Winning the World Series as a rookie shortstop, being named the Yankees’ captain, closing the old and opening the new Yankee Stadium. Through it all, I’ve never stopped chasing the next one. I want to finally stop the chase and take in the world.”
Jeter’s career, beginning in 1995, has been amongst the best in baseball history, garnering 5 World Series rings, 13 All-Star Game selections, and being a member of the 3,000 career hits club while being a member of the Yankees organization, being the first man to enter the club while being a member of the Yankees organization (his 3,000th hit was a home run – which is typical Jeter fashion).
Jeter is one of the most admired players of this generation of baseball, adulated by Yankees fans the world over, and even loved by those who desperately have cheered against the Yankees for the last 19 years. But whether you love him or hate hime, he is universally respected for his talent and skill at the game, and the achievements he has accrued, while being one of the few players that has remained loyal to a single team his entire career. He has powered his way through numerous injuries, and has never brought any scandal or criticism to his beloved Yankees organization. But most of all, he was a big play player, coming through in moments where he needed to put the team on his back.
Jeter is most likely a first-ballot Hall of Famer.