Arguably one of the greatest players to ever step on a baseball field, Derek Jeter, announced that the 2014 Major League Baseball season would be his last, via Facebook.
Jeter spent all 19 years of his MLB career playing shortstop for the New York Yankees.
The sixth overall pick in the 1992 MLB draft, Jeter has far from disappointed any critics by being American League Rookie Of the Year in 1996, being selected to 13 All-Star appearances along with more than 3,000-hits and becoming the Yankees all-time leader in stolen bases. And how could we forget his highest accomplishments: leading the Yankees to five World Series championships.
Jeter is the poster-child of professional sports. You would think a guy with his status making millions of dollars would go buck wild, but he has always kept a cool demeanor and avoided been involved in any known scandals while under the bright lights of New York City.
Jeter has had his fair share of critics, including myself.
Top players like Barry Bonds and Alex Rodriguez were caught or confessed to using performance enhancing drugs. Since then, I have always been skeptical of players from that era of baseball.
Whenever I would watch Jeter play or hear of the numbers he put up, thoughts like “oh, he’s really going to get caught with those steroids someday” kept running through my mind.
It was like waiting to hear that bit of bad news that you knew was coming, but wanted to do all you could to deny it. But I’m thankful that new never broke, and I pray it never does.
I really do think Jeter deserves a standing ovation for having been surrounded by players like Rodriguez and never sticking a needle up his arm to help him play better.
After Jeter officially retires at the end of the 2014 season, a question will be circulating the sports world. Not if Jeter will be inducted into the MLB Hall of Fame, but rather how long will it take.
The Hall of Fame requires for the inductee to have played in the MLB a minimum of 10 years and be retired for five. The committee takes performance record in consideration, and I have no doubt in my mind that what Jeter has accomplished throughout his career he will some day join the elite in the prestigious honor.