[originally posted September 24, 2014; updated January 6, 2015 to reflect Craig Biggio's election to the Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, New York]
I have been a Yankees fan since I was a kid. We couldn't afford to buy team jerseys, so I remember taking two pieces of black electrical tape and pasting a #7 on a white T-shirt in honor of my favorite player at the time, Mickey Mantle. It was toward the end of his career, team attendance was abysmal by today's standards (the Yankees were lucky to draw 15,000-20,000 for a long stretch), championships were no longer in sight, but it was still special. If we were lucky, perhaps my family would get to see one game per season, either at Yankee or Shea Stadium. (I do root for the Mets as well these days.) If we were really lucky, we would go on a promotional day - Cap Day, Bat Day, Record Day (a vinyl version of Here Come the Yankees, Lou Gehrig' s famous speech, Phil Rizzuto's "Holy Cow!", and more) - all were wonderful.
It seems like Derek Jeter's career just started, but in a few days, the 2014 season will end without the Yankees in the post-season. Mathematically, there is an infinitesimal chance of the team sneaking in to the playoffs, I believe, but the teams in front would have to collapse in their remaining games, besides the Yankees winning all of their own games. I remember visiting my younger brother at SUNY-Albany when Bernie Williams was playing for the Yankees' minor league team there. Time flies. With the constant attention on Jeter's pending retirement, some have said that he has deserved the attention, while others have suggested that he was overrated as a baseball player. So which side am I on in this debate?
In my opinion, Jeter should be an easy choice for the Hall of Fame. The Yankees have always been known for their sluggers, the Bronx Bombers. The triple crown looks at home runs, runs batted in (RBI's), and batting average. To win a game, however, you need to score more runs than the other team. On offense, this is one area where Jeter not only excelled, but achieved it at a world-class level, better than any other shortstop in the history of major league baseball, and equal to or better than many current Hall-of-Famers. According to Major League Baseball, here are the top 20 all-time best in terms of scoring runs (bold denotes members of the Baseball Hall of Fame):
Blog Author - Ken Felsher
With over 25 years of writing, editing, and research experience. I enjoy sharing with my readers my love of working with content on a variety of subjects.
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