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Jeter Watch - So Long, Captain

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Ok. Deep breaths here. It'll be just fin… AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH! Sorry for that. We're still recovering. Especially this blogger. Since the legendary Derek Jeter —Yankees Captain, five-time World Series winner, former Rookie of the Year, 13-time All-Star, only player ever to win All-Star Game MVP and World Series MVP in the same season, 3,316 hits, 1,876 runs scored, .312 career hitter, merciful victim of Houston Astro negligence*, and postseason leader in like, everything — announced his retirement via his Facebook page, lots of fetal positions have been assumed. It's not just the end of an era; it's the end of an empire. And it's an empire we here at Modify respect the heck out of. The Captain isn't unfamiliar territory for us -- we've written about him before, made watches emblazoned with his number, and have praised him countless times in the midst of conversations having nothing to do with him in the first place, much to the ire of our peers. But his prospective absence is unfamiliar. Super unfamiliar. When Derek Jeter first started playing in pinstripes, Bill Clinton was an un-impeached president, AOL was the leading Internet Service Provider and Danny Wuerffel was well on his way to a Heisman. His tenure has spanned three two-term Presidencies. During his career, 50 Cent, Daniel Powter, Faith Hill, Flo Rida and Ke$ha had Number 1 singles. And all they do is sing. In addition to his longevity, the Captain has also showed remarkable character and moral fiber during a time when the opposite seemed to be true of so many superstars. He was the model of consistency, collecting 200 hits an astonishing eight times and batting .300 or better 12 times. In the course of his 18 seasons, he's made 20 errors just twice, and once was in his rookie season. When Jeter arrived in New York, baseball's most storied franchise was in the midst of a franchise-record World Series drought. It took him exactly 172 regular season games to reverse that trend. He was the rock during the Yankees 1998-2000 World Series Three-Peat, and the Captain we all know for the 2009 win. We made a watch that honored him, for obvious reason, but he probably deserves four more. Ballplayers like Jeter come around once a generation, and we're just happy he came during ours.

Fire-In-The-Bronx

His announcement, which came on his terms, was yet another classy move from the Master of Class. Instead of allowing his "potential" retirement to cloud the clubhouse all season, he removed speculation from the equation. So here's to the next member of Monument Park, the Captain, the legend. We feel like we can speak for everyone (save Red Sox fans) when we say this: We will miss you.   Footnotes *The Astros picked first in the 1992 draft, selecting pitcher Phil Nevin, which brings us to a knock-knock joke in poor taste: Knock knock! Who's there? Phil Nevin. Phil Nevin who? Exactly. Somebody is responsible for that oversight, and it's a safe bet to assume they think about it no less than 14 times per day. If we were to do the math, and we were also to assume that this person started feeling this way midway through 1996 (Jeter's ROY season), then they've considered this mistake roughly 6,752 times in 18 years. Roughly.

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