If I told you Derek Jeter would walk off in his last game ever at Yankee Stadium, knowing all we know about Derek Jeter.... you'd tell me it wouldn't surprise you. That's because it wouldn't. When Derek Jeter is on the field, there is something called Jeter Magic. Even in the 7th inning tonight, before the walk-off, I tweeted:
Magic happens like that when the Cap comes to bat. I'll take it. #BYB #Jeter #Re2pectIt's very true. Derek Jeter has had many great moments in his career. I've always said that he's always been at the right place at the right time because he's determined and has the will and want to accomplish anything. And he has. The rings, the home runs when we needed them most... the amazing plays... and a walk-off in his last game in the Bronx. It's assumed when it's Derek Jeter, but when it happens, you still can't believe it! Jeter is that player, and that's why we love him. It really makes no difference what the haters say about Derek. We... the fans, know that Derek Jeter is the greatest.
— Robert Casey (@BleednYankeeBlu) September 26, 2014
It's funny, when the game started, it seemed too scripted. Michael Kay even seemed like he was over rehearsed. The camera angles were too many, even shaky at times. It was overproduced. It was almost like there was too much going on at once. It was almost like YES just didn't want to blow it. I get it... but they should have let it happen.
Then, when Hiroki Kuroda gave up back-to-back home runs in the 1st inning, in between Michael Kay's description of Bald Vinny and Roll Call. It was awkward and yet, kind of laughable.
My buddy sent me a text at that moment... "This is surreal." It couldn't end bad, could it? I was worried. But soon enough, the game went on, it seemed more like a ball game.
Like clockwork, Derek Jeter hit an RBI double and later scored. It was knotted 2-2 for a while. Then in the 7th, it was Jeet again, this time he reached on a throwing error and 2 runs scored. Then Brian McCann sacrificed home Brett Gardner.
When David Robertson came in in the 9th, I didn't think much of it. I figured he'd lock the O's down and there would be a celebration on the field for the Captain. I think we all did... but the O's tied it up in the top of the 9th. Are you kidding me?
Then... something happened again... Jeter Magic.
Jose Pirela singled to start things off in the bottom of the 9th. Brett Gardner then sac bunted. Antoan Richardson, Pirela's replacement reached second. The table was set for Derek Jeter.
An opposite field RBI single and just like that, the game was over. Jeter walked off and the Yankees won. You could call the game meaningless all you want. Well, it will be the most important meaningless game in history from this day forward.
I don't know why, but I wanted to reach out to a guy who played with Jeter. It was Clay Rapada. When we interview Clay at BYB, I asked him about Derek as a teammate and he said this:
"He will go down as one of my top favorite teammates."
For some reason, that stuck in my mind tonight. I reached out to Clay on Twitter about tonight's Jeter walk off. Clay wrote me back:
@BleednYankeeBlu he is unbelievable...In Hollywood, that ending would have never made the film. It was too obvious. In the Bronx though... knowing everything we know about our Captain and knowing what he's all about, it's the perfect ending to a perfect career.
— Clay Rapada (@pada5something) September 26, 2014
The chanting. The waves and the Core Four all together again with Bernie Williams and Joe Torre. The Gatorade poured on Jeter for the first time as a Yankee ever. The hugs of his parents and his sister. The prayer at shortstop.
And the walk down the dugout steps and into the tunnel... It may have been one of my favorite moments of the Captain ever. And what a way to go out. Always on top... win or lose... always on top. Derek Jeter may not have been the most talented ball player ever... but it didn't matter. He was a believer his entire career. He knew he could do it and he worked hard and throughout his career... he became a champion. Tonight... tonight was just gravy.
I leave you with this. It was the video played tonight on YES:
Thank you Derek.
Final: Yankees 6 - Orioles 5
You've made BYB the fastest growing Yankees fan site in history. Now shop at the Bleeding Yankee Blue store! Follow me on Twitter @BleednYankeeBlu and LIKE Bleeding Yankee Blue on Facebook!