Farewell, Captain

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Alexandra Ortiz | Asst. Sports Editor

Oct. 2, 2014

Top of the second Derek Jeter the Captain of the New York Yankees comes up to bat. Cheers and boos all mixed in one big roar throughout the stadium, all silenced by the sound of the bat. Back, back and it’s gone!

A solo home-run from the captain, his 257th career homer and the last one at the Big ‘A’.

Growing up I was raised by my mom to love the New York Yankees. I remember hearing the stories of the great Yankees of past generations and the numerous World Series titles. Looking back, the only Yankee number I’ve ever worn on my back was No. 2, the captain.

As true Yankee fans we want and expect a winning season for that matter a championship every year! It’s in our Yankee culture to think that we’re the best cause after all we’re the New York Yankees.

That’s why there’s no other place for Derek Jeter than in the Bronx with the Yanks. Ever since he came up from the minor leagues he was destined for greatness.

They say that the Yankees are only supposed to have 9 great players throughout the time, those ‘Baseball Gods’ are the only ones that will wear single digit numbers and the only numbers to be retired.

When it was Jeter’s turn to get assigned a number the Yankees took a big risk and gave him number two instead of 19, and boy did that make a difference!

Within a couple of years Derek had turned into one of the most respected and admired shortstops in baseball. We all wanted someone like the captain in our team.

Growing up in Chicago rooting for the Cubs we all dreamed of the day Jeter would come play for us and rescue the Chicago Cubs from the curse (he was never going to leave New York).

Fans everywhere have seen him dive into stands and come out with a bloody nose; have seen him reach milestones, make amazing supernatural plays and even saw the tragic night during the 2012 postseason when Jeter broke his ankle and missed most of the 2013 season.

Which brings us to the 2014 season, Jeter’s farewell season, when he will be retiring after 20 years.

As a Yankee fan I go see them every time they’re in town, but this time it was special because it’s the last time I would be seeing him play in person before he retires.

The atmosphere was great May 7 at Angel Stadium; even though there were still a lot of Angel’s fans we were still there for one thing to see Jeter. The Angels honored Derek with a tribute video and a Yankee designed paddleboard as gift for his last visit to Anaheim.

It was than time to ‘Play Ball’ the Yankees started hot with their bats scoring 5 runs in the first inning, but it was the Jeter homer that made the game and unforgettable night.

In the end even Angel’s fans cheered to have seen such an event take place. Cause after all its Jeter the captain of the New York Yankees.

Forward to the last week of the regular 2014 baseball season, and Derek’s last games of his career. All week fans everywhere were counting down to the last at bat, the last play, and the last act of greatness from the captain.

On Sept. 25 was the last time Derek Jeter was going to shine underneath the Yankee Stadium lights.

Throughout the game the Yanks had the victory, until the ninth inning when a home run from the Orioles first baseman Steve Pearce tied up the game 5-5.

Bottom of the ninth with a runner on base captain Clutch (Jeter) came through with the walk off single heard around the world.

A worthy finale for an incredible career at Yankee Stadium.

Fenway Park was the last stop on Derek’s farewell season and once again Red Sox’s fans showed their gratitude to the captain. Even the Red Sox’s nations have mentioned before they can’t hate the captain, he’s a class act type of player.

Jeter decided to play designated hitter for his last series of his career, since the feeling of playing shortstop was meant to be left at Yankee Stadium.

Boston’s legends reunited once again to honor Jeter one last time; while on the green monster the words “With respect 2 Derek Jeter” decorated the outfield.

On Sept. 28, we witnessed the captain’s last curtain call in the third inning after he hit his final infield single. The fans at Fenway Park gave Derek Jeter his last standing ovation as he walked off the field into Yankee immortality.

For Yankee fans this was a short and sad season. Not only did we miss out on the postseason, but also it was the last time we saw the great Derek Jeter play in pinstripes.

Its time to realize this is not a dream Mr. November is gone and things will never be the same in the Bronx.

As a Yankee fan I feel lucky to have seen one of the great ones of our times play for the Yankees.

Joe DiMaggio once said, “I want to thank the Good Lord for making me a Yankee fan. And we are always going to thank the Good Lord for making Derek Jeter a Yankee.

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