I got to see the Captain, Derek Jeter, for the final time over the weekend. It was bitter sweet remembering the 2001 ALDS’ famous “flip” play, yet also saying goodbye to one of the greatest and classiest ball players I have ever witnessed play the game. It is strange to think that he will not be there next season as I remember him first coming up in the league. I’ve taken seeing him play for granted for the last two two decades. This weekend that appreciation was too little too late but watching the Captain’s last moments at O.Co Coliseum was definitely a privilege.
Jeter had hits in all three games over the weekend. Welcomed with a standing ovation Friday and more cheers than boos from the Oakland crowd each time he came to the plate or made a defensive play. The A’s took the final two games of the three game series from the Yankees, but prior to Sunday’s game Jeter was presented with his farewell tour gift from the Athletics.
The A’s Community Fund donated $10,002 to Jeter’s Turn 2 Foundation that fights to keep kids away from substance abuse. The club delivered Jeter with personalized bottles of wine and a vacation trip in Northern California’s beautiful Napa Valley. Not a bad way to spend part of your retirement at all!
I began thinking about which other gifts Jeter had received thus far on his farewell tour and I could only recall that the Houston Astros gifted Jeter with a Stetson cowboy hat, personalized pinstriped cowboy boots, a new set of golf clubs and if I remember correctly golf lessons with one of Tiger Woods’ coaches. Again, not a bad way to spend one’s retirement.
So what else has he been given between his most recent gift from the Athletics and his first of the year by the Houston Astros. Bleacher Report has a blog cataloging Jeter’s gifts so the full list of gifts acquired by the short stop was not hard to find. I figured I would share it with you here.
- Houston Astros – Stetson cowboy hat, pinstripe cowboy boots, golf clubs and instruction
- Los Angeles Angels – a personalized paddleboard
- Milwaukee Brewers – a $10,ooo check to the Turn 2 Foundation presented by the scout who signed him along with a bronze bat
- New York Mets – a farewell cake made by winners of the reality show Cake Boss and artwork created from subway tiles to commemorate the Subway Series between the two teams
- Chicago Cubs – declared the night “Derek Jeter Night” complete with a banner in the outfield saying “Farewell Captain” and the number “2″ from the Wrigley Field scoreboard
- St. Louis Cardinals – another $10,000 check for the Turn 2 Foundation and custom Stan Musial cufflinks
- Seattle Mariners – Robinson Cano presented Jeter with $34K Jay-Z (who is Jeter’s current agent) Hubolt watch
- Oakland Athletics – 3 bottles of customized 2009 Abreu Madrona Ranch cabernet. He also gets a stay at Meadwoods Resort and dinner at Mustards Grill.
Teams are of course not required to give gifts, but most want to honor the career of the legendary Yankees’ shortstop. Even as I watched him play for the last time Sunday, I still cheered for him even against my own team.