All Things Bubba

Because how can you not love a baseball player named "Bubba"?

Saturday, July 09, 2011

Jeter finally does it

Derek Jeter has gotten his 3,000th hit, and in a fashion that seems like it could only happen in a movie. He went 5 for 5 today, and the historic hit was a home run. Jeet has never been much of a home run hitter, and certainly not this year. But he did it today. Just an unbelievable moment.

It's an amazing accomplishment.

This has been Jeter’s most trying season, with a career-low .257 average through Friday. He spent almost three weeks on the disabled list with a strained calf muscle, and has hit a higher percentage of ground balls (65.3 percent through Friday) than any other player in the majors.

Naturally, some of the erosion in Jeter’s skills can be traced to age, and, perhaps, to the extra wear and tear from roughly a season’s worth of games — 147 — across 30 postseason series. He has also played no defensive position besides shortstop, the most demanding spot on the field besides catcher.

Only one other player, Honus Wagner, reached 3,000 hits while still a regular shortstop. Wagner did it in 1914.

“Physically, you have a responsibility that can be difficult, and mentally as well, you have to be in every pitch, every game,” Jeter said, referring to shortstop. “So there’s probably a reason why there’s not too many guys that have played the position that have had that amount of hits. I take pride in it. This is my job. This is the only thing I’ve done.”

I wonder what Jeter is going to do once his playing days are done. Joe Torre, in his book, told a story about how Jeter never watches baseball games at home. A-Rod wanted to watch a game, and couldn't believe that Jeter didn't know what channel it was on. Torre said players always try to hang on too long; he claims Jeter is the only player he knows who will be able to walk away from baseball when the time comes, and never look back. I'm not so sure about that myself.

The fan who caught the ball (actually, picked it up off the floor) gave it back. Wow. I'm not sure I could bring myself to do that. He could have sold it for six figures. That's a house, a child's college education, retirement security. The Yanks rewarded him handsomely, of course, but

posted by BubbaFan, 6:48 PM


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