So this Derek Jeter thing has got me annoyed.
If you’re not sure what I’m talking about, the New York Yankees legend in residence was involved in a little controversy this week. During a game with the Tampa Bay Rays, Jeter was at bat when a ball thrown toward him hit the knob of his bat.
Except Jeter reacted like he’d actually been hit by the ball. He danced around in pain, wincing, grabbing at his forearm; really, Meryl Streep and Gene Hackman would’ve been proud of his performance.
The home-plate umpire bought Jeter’s act, and he was awarded first base. After the game, practically everyone in baseball praised Jeter for being a “gamer,” and for taking advantage of a situation and using it to his advantage.
Couple thoughts on this:
– Derek Jeter has been universally praised for being the epitome of class and sportsmanship through out his career. This was bush league, I don’t care if everyone in baseball says it’s “part of the game.”
– Can you imagine the uproar if Alex Rodriguez had done this? He’d be roasted from coast to coast. I love Jeter as much as most Yankees fans, but he’s getting a free pass on this because he’s Derek Jeter.
Look, I know it’s not exactly a capital crime here. The Yankees lost the game, anyway, so it’s not like Jeter helped the Yankees “steal” a win. But here was a man admired and loved by millions for his class and sportsmanship. And in a situation where he knew he didn’t get hit by the ball, he pretended he did. He lied. He cheated.
And as a Derek Jeter fan, that disappoints me.
Of course, the greatest sportswriter working in America, Joe Posnanski, wrote a great take here, including video of the play:
**It sometimes seems like there are 4,432 charities and foundations out there whose mission is to raise money for cancer research. And don’t get me wrong: it’s fantastic that there are so many who are so interested in helping kill the deadly disease.
I just learned about a new one, though, that I think offers a great idea for people to help. It’s called Donate A, and at their website, www.DonateA.org, they explain their mission.
What the organization does is ask people to donate unused tickets to sporting events, concerts, museum shows, etc., to their organization, and DonateA then passes on those tickets to children who are stricken with cancer, and their families.
Not that I’m telling you anything you don’t know, but a kid stricken with cancer has so much misery in their life. Pain and suffering are par for the course, so a chance for a kid to see a Yankees game, or a concert, could be exactly what they need to lift their spirits.
If this sounds a little like what the Make-A-Wish Foundation does, well, I thought that, too. But DonateA is a little more specific. They’re in three cities so far (Atlanta, New York and Chicago), so if you live in one of those places, please consider how much joy a kid with cancer would get from your donated tickets.