Many many years ago the Boston Red Sox traded away a slugger that had just helped them win a World Series, he went by the name of Bambino, better known as the Great Babe Ruth. The result was a curse on the team that saw the team unable to win a World Series for the next 86-year period from 1918 to 2004.
Are the Yankees about to make the same mistake with Derek Jeter? Make no mistake, there have been some amazing Yankees, but without question, both in stature, presence and actual numbers Derek Jeter as either at the top of the list or very close to it. Jeter is the Yankees all time leader in hits, surpassing the great Lou Gehrig for the honor, and currently sits at 2,926, just shy of reaching the immortal 3000 hits mark for his career. He’s won five World Series championships for the Yankees and was a major contributor in all of them.
Okay enough of the nostalgia. The bottom line is Jeter is aging. He had a shitty season last year, and he’s looking for a six year contract deal with the Yankees. From a business standpoint, the Yankees are only willing to offer him 3 years at $45M and they’re denying arbitration. The Yankees GM are basically telling the 36 year old Jeter, “if you don’t like it, shop around”. Considering the Yankees probably don’t think Jeter can play shortstop at 42 years of age, and they’ll still have A-Rod at third on contract till he’s 40 something, you can see Cashman’s apprehension.
But is it really possible that Derek Jeter can wear another uniform other than pinstripes? Don’t the Yankees need Jeter and doesn’t Jeter need the Yankees? He can’t really finish his career somewhere else can he? The Yankees can’t let him go, not Jeter, not the heart and soul of the Yankees, not the king of New York…It hurts my eyes to see him in a Red Sox Jersey, I can’t imagine how New Yorkers feel. Someone might have died to today. Will Derek Jeter be in pinstripes for the Yankees next season?