Baseball Legend & Kalamazoo Native Derek Jeter Now In H.O.F.
What should have happened in 2020, happened last night in Cooperstown, New York, when Kalamazoo's Derek Jeter was inducted into baseball's Hall of Fame.
Truly one of baseball's greatest players of all time Derek Jeter get's his due and now holds his place in the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum.
Plenty of Jeter fans were in attendance supporting the New York Yankee sporting No. 2 jerseys or hats.
According to WOOD, Jeter meeting Rachel Robinson, the wife of the late great Jackie Robinson, and Hank Aaron were two people who left a profound impression on him. Jeter said, "these two moments in particular is when I realized that it's more than a game, in just a sense. The greatest people and players in this game, the Hall of Fame family, they're watching, so I wanted their approval. During my career, I wanted to make Mrs. Robinson proud, I wanted to make Hank Aaron proud, I wanted to make all of you behind me proud, not of statistics, proud of how I played the game, how I carried myself and how I respected the game and those before and after me."
Jeter is one of the very few superstar athletes that carried himself throughout his time in baseball as a stand up guy, on and off the field. Yes he did the work, but he appreciated the journey, the players around him, the fans and the game itself.
WOOD reported that former teammate Jorge Posada said, "he didn't care who got credit. All he wanted to do was win."
Former teammate Tino Martinez said, "he should have been a unanimous choice. We knew 10 years ago he was going to be a Hall of Famer."
Jeter took a special moment to pay tribute to his father for inspiration and all the support he gave his son throughout is life and baseball career. Jeter said, "I was first introduced to competition and the game of baseball by my dad. I vividly remember going to watch him play shortstop for his corporate softball team, and I don't think I ever told him this, but I was amazed how good he was and how he stood out in front of everybody else, above everyone else. He was my first idol."
That last line just shows the character Jeter developed from his family and carried all throughout his life as a major league baseball player.
Kalamazoo Central High School home of the Maroon Giants is called Derek Jeter Field. Jeter graduated from K-Central back in 1992. Also on display in the Hall of Fame section dedicated to Jeter and found next to his five championship rings is his Kalamazoo Central baseball hat.
Jeter has an amazing career with the New York Yankees having the most hits for a Yankee and the most hits by any shortstop that played the game. He retired in 2014 and is one of the owners of the Miami Marlins. He will be remembered by Yankees fans, baseball fans and all those who knew him in Kalamazoo.