Tuesday, September 30, 2014


You have heard of the saying, "I came, I saw, I conquered."  In Latin, the phrase translates to"Veni, vidi, vici," a poetic excerpt of a letter written in 46 BC to the Roman Senate by Julius Caesar after he achieved a "swift, conclusive" war victory against his opponents.

Well, after spending a weekend with Derek Jeter, in the Bronx and later in Boston, I feel like I have had the opportunity to relive these victorious poetic words through an emotion-filled story book ending to a career comparable to no other.

This weekend, I captured a piece of history in Derek Jeter's last stand, his last walk off double, his last infield hit which has become a hallmark to his career of hits (453 infield hits representing 13 percent of his total 3465 hits), his last RBI and his last tip of a cap to two adoring ballpark filled fans at Yankee Stadium and Fenway Park.

To say the experience was amazing or awesome would be an understatement.  I guess the word I would use to describe my experience is "incredible."  Derek Jeter, came, saw and conquered even the coldest of Boston Red Sox hearts- his presence enacted a truce between two rivals.  I saw more blue than red in Fenway- a stat that will never be repeated.
On Thursday night, the feeling I had in my heart was like no other.  I decided to take the number 4 train up to the Bronx from Penn Station, so I could "walk from here."

I wanted to walk the streets around the stadium, hours before game time, to capture the feeling of the last game on a field that he built, for if the old Yankee Stadium is the House that Ruth Built, then the new Yankee Stadium is most certainly the House that Jeter Built.  From street vendors to bar keeps to artists and young fans to well-seasoned fans, Jeter was celebrated like no other player since perhaps Mickey Mantle.

When you see seas of #2 around you, and chants of "Der-ek Jet-er" bellowing through your brain, even days later, you know it's a feeling that will never leave you.  This is a baseball fan's best dream come to life- to witness a piece of history, a piece of Jeter, our Yankee, is the best Christmas present you could ever receive.

Jeter's impact on the game is far reaching, which was obvious as I drove across the George Washington Bridge to the Green Monster only a couple days after the emotional walk-off win in New York.  While in Boston, I was overwhelmed by the rival city's embrace of our forever #2.

From the little things, like drink specials at Stan's evil cousin's bar The Cask'n'Flagon at the mouth of the Green Monster, to a service dog paying tribute to the Captain in Kenmore Square, to the hotel in Copley Square running looping highlights of Jeter's career to two rival cousins from Massachusetts, Dianne and Kathy.

Both came together for Jeter, despite their team affiliations and finally two college friends who happened to meet up at this momentous event in front of Gate A.

Fenway was electric.

A second homecoming for Jeter, who stated that he "always respected the Boston Red Sox organization."

After seeing the way Fenway and the Red Sox saluted our Captain, I respect them too.  But Fenway was Yankee Stadium for me and most of the fans who filled the iconic stadium to catch one more hit from the Captain of Baseball, Derek Jeter.

I am forever "changed for good," as the infamous song lyrics of the award winning musical Wicked chime.  I always knew I was a Derek Jeter fan, but what I didn't know was how much of a Derek Jeter fan I was.  Not only am I in love with his game play, but I am in love with the way he has lived his life.  And he's only 40- he has so much more to do to impact our lives.  But, for now, I am happy with my piece of history- priceless memories that will always be a part of me.

--Suzie Pinstripe, BYB Senior Staff Writer
Twitter: @suzieprof


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