Wednesday, July 16, 2014

We need more men like Derek Jeter in this world

In 1996, Derek Jeter broke in with the Yankees.  I started to coach our 3 boys in the local Little League the same year.  
Over the next ten years, I coached kids and Derek Jeter won baseball titles.  He won 5 of them. He will retire with 3,500 hits, a .311 lifetime average and .321 in 38 World Series games.
It didn’t take long before every kid in our Little League wanted to wear #2 or imitate Jeter’s batting stance.  Every kid also wanted to go in the hole and make that patented Jeter jump and throw to first base. Suddenly every kid wanted to play shortstop and drive the ball to the opposite field, another Jeter speciality.
He was the top dog on the biggest team in baseball.
As a dad, I was happy that my sons idolized Jeter.   He was exactly the kind of professional athlete that you’d want your kid to idolize. 
Jeter understood something that most professionals don’t:  You are a role model whether you like it or not!   In other words, kids will look up to you and do what you do.
On Tuesday night, the baseball world said goodbye to Jeter in Minneapolis.   He got everything that he deserved.   I was applauding him too because the world could use more men like Jeter.
The Yankees will come to Texas in August and I will be there to watch Jeter again.  He is really something special, the kind of professional athlete who comes around once in a generation. 
P. S. You can hear CANTO TALK here & follow me on Twitter @ scantojr.

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