How did we get here?
I was born in 1995. That being said, when Derek Jeter announced his retirement set for 2014, I realized that I don’t know a Yankees team without (cue Bob Sheppard voiceover), “Number 2, Derek Jeter.”
Growing up, I never realized I was witnessing history every time Jeter came to bat.
I was fortunate enough to attend a game in Jeter’s farewell season, where I couldn’t help but tear up. Jeter has made such an impression on not only how I watch the game of baseball, but how I carried myself throughout my own athletic endeavors.
On a hot day in July in Cleveland, Ohio I got to witness, in person, one of my favorite athletes of all time take the field in the stadium that holds his first major league home run.
But what made this day at the ballpark, even more tear-jerking for me was the gift to the star shortstop from the Cleveland Indians.
A beautiful Gibson Les Paul pinstripe guitar and a lego portrait of that first homer greeted Jeter at home plate. Check them out here, along with some of the other gifts he’s gotten from other teams.
Jeter has always had a special place in my heart and watching his farewell season took a toll. When your favorite player’s days are numbered you don’t want to miss a second. Especially an athlete with a stature such as Jeter’s.
Once the dreaded day had come, and he took the plate one last time, it was a classic Jeter at bat. One more clutch moment for the captain.
Even rewatching this moment two years later brings tears to my eyes.
I’d be lying if I said that even rewatching this moment didn’t cause me to tear up.
It wasn’t long before the Jeter-less hole in my heart was filled.
When Jeter announced that he was starting a blog, I couldn’t have been more excited.
“Richard Deitsch, who covers media for Sports Illustrated, calls The Players’ Tribune a “hybrid of journalism, storytelling and PR, but a really high-end combination of those three elements.”
Although it’s definitely not what I thought it was going to be when it was initially started, I’m not disappointed.
I should have known that Jeter being his humble self, would not be over the top in his retirement. Instead, he’s used this blog as a platform for other athlete’s to write and have a voice.
Jeter has done so much for the sport of baseball and he only continues to make an impression on the world of sports.