Marlins take in Jeter's HOF induction in BP

Former Yankees SS, current Miami CEO/part owner enshrined in Cooperstown

September 8th, 2021

MIAMI -- Wednesday's batting practice was a little bit different than others for the Marlins at loanDepot park.

CEO and part owner Derek Jeter was enshrined in the National Baseball Hall of Fame at the same time players stretched. Don Mattingly, whose 14th and final Major League season in 1995 overlapped with Jeter's first, asked whether his pregame media session could be held earlier so he could watch Jeter speak. Jorge Alfaro began a clap when Jeter took to the podium, while middle infielders Miguel Rojas and Jazz Chisholm Jr. took in nearly every word of his speech.

Mattingly -- a nine-time Gold Glove Award winner, six-time All-Star, three-time Silver Slugger and the 1985 American League MVP Award winner -- has been managing the Marlins for six seasons, four with Jeter's ownership group at the helm.

"What really impressed me just seeing him early on in camp is just the adjustments, how fast he made them and how much better he was getting every year," Mattingly recalled. "I think he came to camp right after like his very first full Spring Training, was in the big league camp, and seeing him there, he was a little bit -- I shouldn't say a little, he was a lot out of place at that point body-wise, just where he was at in his development. But then each year it was just like, 'Oh, he got better.' Next year, 'Whoa.' You know what I mean? And you see the differences, and that tells you a lot about a guy and a player, how quickly they make adjustments."

Marlins general manager Kim Ng reiterated that notion. Her tenure as the Yankees' assistant GM from 1998-2000 overlapped with Jeter's time in the Bronx.

Ng didn't think a front-office role would be in Jeter's future, but she acknowledged that was more because she didn't see why a player would want to go down that career path. Is Jeter different as a CEO compared to as a player?

"I can't compare, but I'm not sure I can contrast, because he's the same guy," Ng said last week. "He's the same guy. It's been interesting for me these last nine months to watch our relationship grow. But he is the same, and that is the amazing thing to me, is the discipline that he had as a player is the discipline that he has as the CEO.

"The leader that he was as a player, a young player, and to see that translate to him as a young CEO, how even-keel he is and how patient he is. All of the things that made him special as a player, he has brought to the table as a CEO, and it makes him great to work with."

Time in The Show
With first baseman Jesús Aguilar landing on the 10-day injured list with left knee inflammation, Lewin Díaz will finally get a more extended look in the big leagues.

"I feel very well just to be back here at home and very glad for the opportunity I always get here and ready to take advantage of it," Díaz said through an interpreter.

Díaz, Miami's No. 11 prospect per MLB Pipeline, entered Wednesday with 33 at-bats across four stints in the Majors this season. Three of his four hits had gone for homers. At Triple-A Jacksonville, he posted an .845 OPS with 20 homers in 74 games.

The 24-year-old Díaz credits focusing on a hitting routine and maintaining it for his success. It has helped him stay relaxed, both in the Majors and Minors.

"I think you already see a little different version of Lewin this year than last," Mattingly said. "A little more patient. He seems comfortable here. He's had pretty much a full season under his belt at Triple-A, so just let Lewin play like the other guys and get more experience and be able to make more adjustments."