Thursday, January 15, 2009

Whither Jetesy?

Caught one of my favorite Seinfeld episodes before Was watching Seinfeld before--the one where George stops having sex and teaches Bernie Williams and Derek Jeter the simple physics of hitting-- and with the beginning of the "What will the Yankees do with Jeter?" discussion starting to rumble in earnest, it was great to get a look at a youthful Cap'n Jetes doing schtick with Bernie and Costanza. Before he was The Captain he was an exuberant youngster, already a champion, playing every night with only winning on his mind--destined for greatness. And that's how I'll remember him.

But gratuitous bro-love aside, I too wonder how the end of his Yankees career is going to play out. He'll retire a Yankee because he has to and because the Yanks take care of their iconic players that way. He's a lifer. How much he'll get paid after the 2010 season and how (and certainly where) he plays from then until the end are the big unknowns. Money and contract issues are not really of interest to me right now, but I am curious to see where he fits in as his career declines. We thought first base, but enter Bronx Bombers First Basemen Episode 4: A New Hope. Based on what I said above about Jeter's status, I don't think Tex's arrival signals his end in the Bronx, but Jeter's numbers are on the decline; his power has shrunk to the point where he's now a singles hitter who grounds into way too many double plays, traits that aren't becoming for a shortstop and number 2 hitter. Ditto for DH. A-Rod is here for another 9 years at third, so whither Jetesy? At the moment I'm trying really to convince myself that I see The Captain settling under a fly ball somewhere in the new Stadium's outfield, but I'm glad I caught him in his Jeterian innocence on Seinfeld, as I will remember him. It's too tough just yet to imagine Bob Sheppard announcing, "Batting seventh, the left fielder, number 2, De-rek Je-ter...number 2." Yieeesh. That was weird.

Okay time for college hoops (football season is essentially over, sigh)-- c'mon Hoos make it enjoyable! Yea, my expectations against UNC aren't the highest, but we have a sweet freshman who is about to have the ACC Rookie of the Week Award renamed after him, and we're playing at home. Every puncher has his chance. Game just started, $$ is in the house, awesome.

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