I am under no delusion that this post will do much to combat any anti-Yankee feelings. I mean I write for Bleeding Yankee Blue. Now those who read articles on the site know that you get the good, the bad and the ugly when it comes to the Bronx Bombers here. We try to call it down the middle, but it wouldn’t surprise me if a Mets’ fan (as an example) just dismissed the entire endeavor as a Yankee propaganda machine…they’d be wrong. I have always thought that by and large fans and writers around baseball have found one piece of common ground to agree on, that being that Derek Jeter is a class act. I was fairly certain that it was just something we all saw clearly and concurred on. I have friends in Boston, hardened Yankee haters by the way, who will tell me time and time again, “I think the reason I dislike him is because I like the guy so much.” And they pull no punches in New England when it comes to all things New York.
The thing I think I’d been missing is that the deepest hatred of the Yanks and their Captain doesn’t come from the club’s greatest rival. It doesn’t come from the west coast or smaller markets…it comes from the other team and their fan base right here in the City of New York. The Mets hate on a grander scale than I ever gave them credit for. Silly Metropolitans, whining is for kids.
Michael Gray of the New York Post wrote a less than flattering article about Derek Jeter and his last season recently. Gray, a New York Mets fan, takes issue with the Captain and calls out his ego driven antics on this his final lap in the Big Leagues. The Post writer feels that Jeter’s humble, team first persona is a sham. He feels that Jeter is every bit an ego-maniacal superstar and that this farewell tour was a calculated, plotted out “Me” fest. He is not only absolutely wrong in my opinion; he is absolutely a sham himself and is letting his Yankee inferiority complex fuel his writing.
(In Photo: Jeter 1996)
I am an admitted Yankee fan. I am also a fan of Derek Jeter as a player and a person. If ever there was a “real deal” it’s the Kid from Kalamazoo. It’s not only the Yankees and their fans that will tell you Derek is as good as advertised. It’s his PEERS that truly tell his story. It the guys he’s played with, against and the guys coming up who looked up to him. That is the measure of a man. Mets’ fans and so-called Sports writers don’t have to like it, but don’t let your own nonsense cloud your vision. Your club is the other New York team. That isn’t really Derek Jeter’s fault. It’s not really anybody’s fault. The Mets got to the party later. The city was claimed long ago. Get over it…or move to Jersey. I won’t miss ya.
I am biased when it comes to my team, but I have said, agreeing with Gray, that we should save up the goodbyes until the end of the year. It would be EXACTLY what Jeter would want to. Michael’s sad attempt to paint Jeter as a selfish Prima Donna is just lame. You can see his words dripping with the jealously a sorority sister might have for the girl that got invited to the big formal dance by the Varsity letterman. Hey Mike, I think they did a better job with Citi Field if it helps you.
I don’t want to sound like the “Obnoxious Yankee Fans” I hear so much about. I don’t hate the Mets or their fans. I don’t see a rivalry here. My Grandmother became a Mets fan when the Dodgers (who I really do dislike) left Brooklyn. She would always talk about her “Ronny Darling” and “HoJo”. I have good memories of watching those great Met teams win…they weren’t my team, but hey, good for them.
The league on a whole is going to push and pull Derek Jeter to get every inch of press and money out of his farewell. It will be out of the man’s control for what he will have to deal with on this last ride into the sunset. Anyone not blinded by his or her own Blue and Orange glasses can see that. Derek Jeter is one of the good guys in this game…maybe one of the last. If it bothers you turn off your TVs and wait until 2015.
Read Casey's take on Gray & the Captain too. Read JETER ISN'T ABOUT EGO. WRITE THAT DOWN.
** Anyway, I was going to send out “Hey Jealously” by the Gin Blossoms to Michael Gray…but I’m angrier than that. I want him to WALK away. Here’s Pantera.”