The American League beat the National League, 5-3, in Derek Jeter’s final All-Star Game, and Jeter fittingly was 2-2 with a run scored.
In the top of the first inning, Jeter made an outstanding diving catch to get a hard grounder by Andrew McCutchen in the hole, but because McCutchen has blazing speed he just barely beat the throw to first. Jeter has made many diving plays similar to that one in his career, so starting his final All-Star Game with another vintage Jeter play made sense.
In the bottom of the first inning, after Bob Sheppard’s famous recording announced Jeter’s at bat and the crowd graciously gave him a one-minute standing ovation, Jeter hit a double to the wall in right field off of Adam Wainwright. Jeter said that he will always remember that Wainwright, along with catcher Jonathan Lucroy, made sure to step away to leave plenty of time for the lengthy standing ovation.
Jeter scored the first of five American League runs after All-Star Game MVP Mike Trout hit a triple to deep right. During Jeter’s at-bat where he hit a double an obnoxious person was heard clearly yelling “overrated” at him. Jeter’s double was the best response possible to his incorrect statement. Jeter seemingly can always get a hit clutch hit in an important game.
In his second at-bat, in the third inning, Jeter hit a single to shallow right off of Alfred Simon. It was a classic inside out swing by Jeter that he has used to get so many singles during his illustrious career. He would advance to second base on a wild pitch by Simon.
The single in the third led to Jeter’s third multi-hit game as an All-Star, which is the most in the legendary history of the New York Yankees. Jeter, who was playing in his 14th All-Star Game, now has 13 hits in the All-Star Game, which is second most among all American League players. In fact, according to MLB, at 40 years and 19 days, Jeter is the oldest player in All-Star Game history with a multi-hit game. Jeter finished his last All-Star Game with an outstanding .481 career average.
In the top of the fourth inning, with Jeter already at shortstop, John Farrell had Alexei Ramirez come to the position to take him out so that Jeter could get another lengthy standing ovation. This was a great move by Farrell because Jeter was able to get what he deserved. There was a three-minute standing ovation, and Jeter tipped his cap repeatedly to the crowd and hugged and thanked all of his teammates in the dugout while Frank Sinatra’s “New York, New York” was appropriately playing at Target Field.
Jeter liked how he was taken out of the game. “My back was turned,” Jeter said. “I heard Cano yelling, but usually when he yells I ignore him (laughing). It was unscripted, but I like how it was handled.”
After the game, Jeter said that he never takes coming to the All-Star Game for granted he enjoys seeing the players that he admires for afar. He took the high road when the controversy started about Wainwright apparently trying to let Jeter get a hit in his first at-bat.
“He grooved them?” Jeter said. “The first was a little cutter he threw down and away. The second one was about 98 two-seamer that stayed on really good– I don’t know, man. (Laughter.) If he grooved it, thank you. You still have to hit it. I appreciate it if that’s what he did, thank you.”
This was yet another game that Jeter has played well in big moment. It would make sense if the Yankees can make the playoffs for the 17th time in his 19 year career, but making the playoffs at this point is an unknown since they are currently five games behind first place. Jeter has a very impressive .308 batting average in 650 at-bats, which proves that the pressure does not get to him. He still has a chance to add to his legacy in the last few month of his career, but the will definitely never be another player who will have the impact on baseball like Jeter has had.
Here is what Jeter had to say to his AL teammates before the All-Star Game. He continued the tradition as fellow member of the Core Four, Mariano Rivera, talked to his AL teammates before his final All-Star Game last season.
Here is what celebrities like Billy Crystal, Spike Lee, Regis Philbin, and Michael Strahan had to say about what Jeter means to baseball: