The Year of Jeter: Top 10 moments from The Captain's final season
The top 10 Jeter moments of 2014
2014 was nothing if not "The Year of Jeter." The longtime Yankee captain called it quits after 20 years of service and 3,465 hits. His final year was marked by a farewell tour that allowed the Yankees, MLB and baseball fans around the country an opportunity to properly pay their RE2PECTs to one of the greatest players to ever don pinstripes.
Amid the scores of presentations and highlights and Hallmark moments involving The Captain, the following 10 resonated with fans more than the rest ... or at least appeared more attractive to your clicking fingers:
10. MLB's farewell to The Captain - Late September brought Bryan Cranston's one-man baseball show and the final act of Jeter's fine career. In one week, they broke the Internet together before the postseason was officially underway.
9. Derek Jeter is now agricultural art - You know you've made it when a farmer in New Jersey arranges his crops into a maze shaped like your face.
8. Jeter and BFF Brielle Saracini - Brielle and Jeets bonded after she lost her father in the 9/11 attacks and he invited her to a game. Now 23, Brielle is battling cancer and still as close with Jeter as ever.
Happy Derek Jeter's Birthday! pic.twitter.com/HwamjllGxH- brielle saracini (@bmsaracini) June 26, 2014
7. His final Yankee Stadium at-bat - If David Robertson doesn't blow a save on Sept. 25, we never get the poetic bookend to Jeter's 20-year career that was his final at-bat in the Bronx: a walk-off single to right field that scored Antoan Richardson and gave way to one of TIME's 100 Photographs of 2014.
6. Derek Jeter Day - The farewell tour wouldn't have been complete without The Captain being honored with his very own holiday in New York. Fans flooded into the Bronx for Derek Jeter Day on Sept. 7, 2014 and a glorious time was had by all.
5. DER-EK JE-TER, *CLAP, CLAP, CLAPCLAPCLAP* - While Yankee fans were still coming to grips with their new reality -- a life without Derek Jeter manning the shortstop position -- The Rock made his triumphant return to WWE Monday Night RAW in Brooklyn. And he honored The Captain the way Yankees fans have been doing it for years.
4. "Hello, Derek Jeter speaking" - Not just any baseball player is cool enough to answer a reporter's cell phone when it rings during an interview. Then again, Derek Jeter isn't just any baseball player.
3. Jeter gives Ichiro silent treatment - The best way to congratulate a teammate on his first (and only) home run of the season is to throw shade when he knocks that first dinger over the wall.
2. The Fake Double Play - Jeter put his veteran know-how on display back in July, pretending to turn a double play, prompting Jason Kipnis to slide into second, thus enabling the Yankees to turn a different double play.
It's not a trick, Michael ... IT'S AN ILLUSION!
1. The Gatorade commercial - C'mon. You knew this was coming. And it's only fitting because we still "have something in our eye" when we see it ... three months after it originally aired.