Derek Jeter’s 10 best Yankees moments
Table of Contents
Derek Jeter is an adorable legend who every Yankees fan cherishes to see, listen to, know, and meet. His career in New York is replete with great moments that enliven the memories of the era when the Yankees’ dynasty swept everything before it. Let’s find out Derek Jeter’s top 10 Yankees moments.
The 3,000th hit: July 9, 2011
Derek Jeter needed 74 hits at the start of the 2011 season to reach the impressive 3,000-hit mark. But a calf injury put him on the disabled list in mid-June. However, on July 9 at Yankee Stadium, he was able to make history in the bottom of the third inning.
In the first, Derek Jeter hit Tampa Bay’s David Price to a single into left field. This was his 2,999th hit. Two innings later, Price threw a 3-2 curveball that Jeter hit into the left-field seats for a home run. He became the 28th player in MLB history to get 3,000 hits, and he did it in style.
The Captain told reporters after the game, “If I had tried to write it and give it to someone, I wouldn’t have even bought it; it was one of those memorable days.”
Derek Jeter hit the mark in front of a full house. That day, he hit 5-for-5, with a double in the fifth inning, a single in the sixth, and a run-scoring single in the eighth that gave the Yankees a 5-4 win and kept the party going.
The flip play against Oakland: Oct 13, 2001
Derek Jeter’s “flip play” presents a unique moment in his 20-year career as a shortstop for the New York Yankees. In Game 3 of the 2001 ALDS in Oakland, California, he did it in the bottom of the seventh inning. When Terrence Long hit a double down the right-field line, Shane Spencer caught the ball in the corner. But his wild throw toward home went over Alfonso Soriano at the second base and Tino Martinez at the first base, as Jason Giambi was coming around the third base.
Derek Jeter ran across the infield to catch the throw near the first-base line as it bounced. He then threw it to catcher Jorge Posada, who tagged Giambi just before he crossed home plate.
“It’s the first time I saw a shortstop in that position,” ex-Yankee Jerry Coleman told. “The second baseman usually goes out and the first baseman comes back. In this case, Jeter was there, and I have no understanding why. And just to get rid of it the way he did was brilliant,”
In 2017, Mike Stanton, who used to pitch for the Yankees, told The Post, “The flip play was really the turning point. If they get that run, we can’t make it back. That kind of flipped the switch for some reason.”
Derek Jeter’s flip put the Yankees ahead 1-0, and they retained the lead to register their first win in the best-of-five series, which they went on to win. They won the American League title by beating the Mariners in five games in the ALCS. However, they lost the World Series to the Diamondbacks.
Derek Jeter’s World Series walk-off homer: Oct 31, 2001
After 9/11, MLB put the season back a week pushing Game 4 to October 31. The Yankees and Diamondbacks were tied 3-3 going into the bottom of the 10th. With two outs and no one on base, Derek Jeter stepped up to bat against Byung-Hyun Kim.
At the time, Derek Jeter had only one hit out of fifteen in the series. He fought back from a 0-2 count to a full count. After strike two, he fouled off three pitches. On the ninth pitch of his turn at bat, Jeter sliced a fly ball that just cleared the wall in right field for the game-winning home run.
It was one of the things that made Derek Jeter famous and led to him being called “Mr. November.” Even though the Yankees lost the series in seven games, it was a moment that gave Yankees fans hope for the future of the city. “The Captain” had been waiting for this moment his whole life.
He later told:
“When I saw it go out, I think that was the first walk-off home run I had in my career, and as a kid, you always dream of hitting a walk-off home run in the World Series, and to actually do it is something.”
1996 ALCS home run: Oct 9, 1996
It was special because Derek Jeter got a homer thanks to 12-year-old Yankees fan Jeffrey Maier. In the eighth inning of ALCS Game 1 against the Orioles, the Yankees were behind 4-3 with one out. Mr. November hit over the right field with no one on base. Tony Tarasco in the outfield looked like he was going to catch the ball, but Yankees fan Maier helped Derek Jeter by reaching over the fence and deflecting the ball over the wall.
The Yankees tied the game at 4-4 and left it to Bernie Williams to cement the victory with a homer.
Derek Jeter acknowledges that the 1996 World Series win was his favorite because it was the only time the Yankees were not the favorite. The defending champion Braves beat the Yankees in the first two games of the series. After that, the Yankees won four straight games. It was the start of a run in which the Yankees won four World Series in five years.
Derek Jeter’s first season was in 1996, and he hit so well that he was named AL Rookie of the Year .314 with ten home runs and 78 RBIs.
Derek Jeter’s Hollywood finale: Sept 25, 2014
When “The Captain” wore his beloved pinstripes for the last time, it was a sad night. But he made it one of the most memorable nights. On September 25, 2014, Derek Jeter’s last game, 48,613 fans packed Yankee Stadium to see one of the best shortstops in the game one last time in the Bronx.
Lucky for history, Girardi didn’t give in and take Derek Jeter off the team. In the bottom of the ninth inning, with the score tied at 5-5, the Yankees legend stepped up to the plate with two runners on base for what would be his last at-bat in The Bronx. He took the first fastball and hit it to right field, scoring Antoan Richardson from second base and giving his team a 6-5 win. The walk-off hit he got in his last home game was a great way to end a great career.
Derek Jeter’s World Series homer: Oct 25, 2000
The 2000 World Series was the first subway series since 1956. The Yankees were leading the series 2-1 going into Game 4 at Shea Stadium. Derek Jeter hit Mets starter Bobby Jones’ fastball into the stands in left field for a 1-0 lead. It was the 16th home run to start off the World Series. With that hit, Jeter also made it 13 games in a row that he had a hit in the World Series. The decision by manager Joe Torre to put the aggressive Derek Jeter in the leadoff spot instead of his usual No. 2 spot paid off right away.
According to manager Joe Torre:
“He is not a [classic] leadoff hitter. He sees the ball, he’s going to swing at the ball and make things happen. I know he’s only been around five years, but he has a lot of qualities of taking charge and leading by example.”
The dive into the stands: Jul 1, 2004
It was July 1, 2004, and another red-letter day in the Yankees-Red Sox rivalry. In the 12th inning, when the score was 3-3, Boston almost broke the tie with Trot Nixon at bat. He hit a fly ball down the left-field line and Derek Jeter had an amazing catch while running diagonally through the outfield grass. But he couldn’t stop himself and ran into the crowd.
Soon, Derek Jeter came out of the crowd with bumps on his face and a cut on his chin that required seven stitches. But Jeter’s great defensive play got the Yankees out of trouble and set them on the path to a 13-inning win.
“He just knows, instinctively, what he wants to do as soon as the ball is hit, and you can’t teach that,” Yankees manager Joe Torre told. “Either you can play that or you can’t. He’s made a lot of them over the years.”
Mr. November became Captain Clutch: June 3, 2003
“It’s a big day for Derek Jeter because of the people who came before him,” Steinbrenner said at a news conference at Cincinnati’s Great American Ball Park.
When he became captain, the shortstop was 28 years old and had already won four World Series, been named Most Valuable Player of the World Series, Most Valuable Player of the All-Star Game, and AL Rookie of the Year.
The Yankees ended the 2003 season with a 101-61 record, six games ahead of the Red Sox in the AL East. In the ALCS, Joe Torre’s team beat the Red Sox in seven games. Aaron Boone’s home run in the 11th inning of Game 7 was the game-winner. In a six-game World Series, they lost to the Marlins.
The day of drafting: June 1, 1992
Derek Jeter, a shortstop from Kalamazoo Central High School, was chosen by the Yankees with the sixth overall pick in the 1992 MLB Draft. This was one of the best decisions the team has ever made. It was Jeter’s dream come true.
Derek Jeter wrote a few years after his drafting, “No matter who asked me what I wanted to be when I grew up, I always said I wanted to play baseball for the Yankees.”
At the time, Derek Jeter had promised to go to the University of Michigan, and there was worry that he might not sign with the Yankees. Scout Dick Groch, on the other hand, was sure that Jeter would do well with the major league team. When asked at a meeting before the draft if Derek Jeter was going to Michigan, Groch famously said, “This kid’s only going to Cooperstown.”
Becoming Yankees’ all-time hits leader: Sept 11, 2009
Derek Jeter had been getting close to Lou Gehrig’s franchise hits record for a long time, and on September 11, 2009, it happened. In the bottom of the third inning, Jeter hit Chris Tillman of the Orioles down the right-field line for a single that gave him the 2,722nd hit of his career, putting him ahead of Gehrig as the Yankees’ all-time leader in hits.
Derek Jeter’s teammates rushed out of the dugout to crown him the new hit king of the Yankees, while 46,771 fans at Yankee Stadium went crazy after an 87-minute rain delay. As fans chanted Jeter’s name, he tipped his helmet twice toward the stands to show his appreciation.
“The whole experience has been overwhelming,” Derek Jeter said after the game. “This is more than I could’ve imagined. It says a lot about how [the fans] feel about their team and more importantly how they feel about the history of their team. I appreciate each and everyone that was there.”
Gehrig’s record had been in place for over 70 years. The Hall of Fame first baseman set the record in 1937, passing Babe Ruth, who had held it before. But ALS, a disease that made the Iron Horse weak, ended his career too soon in 1939.
Two days before the record-setting single, Derek Jeter had tied Gehrig with a base hit that was similar to Gehrig’s.
George Steinbrenner, the owner of the Yankees, said in a statement, “For those who say that today’s game can’t make legendary players, I have two words: Derek Jeter.” “Becoming the Yankees’ all-time hit leader is historic and important, but Derek’s achievement is even more impressive because he is one of the best young players in the game today.
Do you have any other moment to add? Let’s know in the comments.