Baseball Toaster Bronx Banter
2006-09-05 10:00
by Alex Belth
Note: The Bronx Banter blog has moved to

Pos on Jetes, Klap on Abreu.

2006-09-05 11:09:20
1.   Chyll Will
Yeesh! What happened here? I got bumped to a nested loop of error messages for a while. Oh well...

It's rather simple and deep at the same time. Jeter is that cool kid that everyone knows by association at best, but don't really know. He doesn't put a lot about himself out there, but we know because of what others have said (true or not) and that alone makes him a living legend of sorts.

On top of that, he's a winner in a land where winning is not only cherished, it's also expected, nay demanded. When the bar is set so high and you consistently meet those expectations in one way or another, you become beloved (if he plays for your team) or hated... but you're in the hearts and minds of millions because you are there, yet you're not.

I wouldn't necessarily compare Jeter to Kaiser Sosze, but he's everywhere and not at the same time. Why him? To me he represents a harmony and focus that the US has come close to at times in history; harambe in the flesh, yet intaqngiably American. When he becomes the underdog (like Mickey in *61), you can bet that he'll be elevated to Godlike status simply because no one like him should ever be placed in that situation (like our modern god of relief pitching, Mo, only playing every day)

I give him his due for playing the game straight, playing with his all and not giving a crap what we think about it except that he played his heart out. That means more to anyone than whether he's the best of his position or time. That's for us to figure out, I guess.

And in a way, we have moments in our own lives that we can either relate, or want to relate to that ethic. Ethics, a good word here. In a world where ethics are scoffed at, Jeter explemplfies not only how high they can be in a hard game and a dirty world, but why you need them. Props.

2006-09-05 11:11:31
2.   Sliced Bread
The Jeter hate would be funny if it wasn't so stoopit. One reason I was so upset with the game Proctor blew against Detroit is because that game was such a great example of Jeter's MVPness. He hits the game-tying 2 RBI double, steals third, and scores on the still-struggling-at-the-time A-Rod sacrifice. It was business as usual for Jeter, and you look around at the other MVP guys they're not bringing that level of all-around game.

As I said last year arguing the case for A-Rod, it's tough for a Yankee to win MVP because they are surrounded by so much talent.

I don't have the numbers to back this up, but I'm guessing without Jeter the Yanks are maybe 1 or 2 games up on the Red Sox at this point, if that, and if the Red Sox have Jeter batting 2nd in front of Manny Ortiz, they're probably ahead of the Yanks at this point.

Klap got it right. Abreu looks like the Yanks deal of the century so far.

2006-09-05 11:18:49
3.   AbbyNormal821
Alex - great articles. People always give me crap when I say Jeter is my favorite player. "Oh, you just like him because he's good looking" Well, DUH...of course he is and I'd be blind & dumb not to notice that!

But what I really like and appreciate so much about him is his genuine love of the game, of wanting to win, his hustle on the field, his always leading by example, his appreciation towards his fans and that he doesn't seem to let all the success he's had go to his head.

My grandmother would've called a guy like him a "mentsh" - Yiddish for "a nice gentleman"

Good stuff there!!!

2006-09-05 11:35:00
4.   Dan M
Interesting that Pena says you never see DJ make the last out. Tony clearly wasn't on the Yankees last year, when Defek seemed to make the last out about once a week.
2006-09-05 11:36:07
5.   Travis
FWIW, Jeter does lead the AL in Win Shares, and is 2nd in Runs Created (with clutch hitting adjustments) behind Travis Hafner.
2006-09-05 12:14:24
6.   Jen
Re: the Klap article, I thought the Justice trade was purely accidental. I always heard that Cash called the Indians trying to get a Series to ring to someone there and the GM asked if he wanted Justice.

Or maybe I'm just delusional.

2006-09-05 12:25:04
7.   singledd
Too Funny!!! From the Jeter article:

In September of 1950, his MVP year, Rizzuto got a letter telling him that if he showed up in uniform against the Red Sox he'd be shot. He turned the letter over to the FBI and alerted his manager, Casey Stengel.

``You know what Casey did?'' Rizzuto later told Sport Magazine. ``He gave me a different uniform and gave mine to Billy Martin. Can you imagine that?''

2006-09-05 12:45:24
8.   Jim Dean
Good to see Klap still getting the details wrong while coming three weeks late to the story.

A-Rod in 2006:
#3 - 8 AB
#4 - 376 AB
#5 - 117 AB

How exactly was "..Joe Torre was finally forced to move A-Rod out of the No. 3 spot in the batting order" for Abreu? It's a bit hard to do since A-Rod hasn't been hitting there all year.

Torre may have finally moved A-Rod from 4th to 5th - but that was just a side effect of Bobby, not because of him.

2006-09-05 12:54:27
9.   Start Spreading the News
4 True. I read somewhere that last year Jeter led the team in last outs.

I would love to have that stat verified but I didn't know where to look that up.

Overall, "Jeter is great" seems to be as overblown as the "A-Rod sucks."

Everyone seems to focus on the times when Arod sucks in the playoffs (.133 BA in division series last year) omitting the times when he did well (.421 BA the year before).

Conversely people remember Jeter's great plays (the dive in the stands and the toss to get Giambi) and forget that Jeter batted .233 and .200 against the Red Sux during the ALCS in 2003 and 2004. Not exactly clutch hitting...

That said, both players are very good, and often great. Both will have their moments of glory. I am glad to call them Yankees.

2006-09-05 13:03:09
10.   Alvaro Espinoza
6 Not delusional. It's a true story.
2006-09-05 13:03:31
11.   Dimelo
1 That's great. I never thought of Jeter as Kaiser Sosze, but I see your point. Good job, CW.
2006-09-05 13:54:54
12.   Murray
Keiser Souzay be damned. Derek Jeter is the new Joe DiMaggio.

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