By Clifford Davis

Derek Jeter stars in the last all-star game of his career

 

The lights shined, the atmosphere was familiar to an October night that he is accustomed to, all the attention before, during, and after the game was on him, and once again Derek Jeter did what he does best: he delivered. In his last all-star game, Jeter went 2-for-2 with a double, a single, and two runs scored in just three innings of play, before being pulled.

The night started with the introductions, Jeter getting a wild ovation from the fans of Minnesota and also players of both leagues. He tipped his cap, and waved to everyone that stood on their feet and applauded in admiration. The game began with Andrew McCutchen hitting a rocket up the middle, Jeter, dived to his left, snatching the ball, fired it to first but not before Andrew touched the base. Jeter showed rare emotions as he fired the ball to first, wanting so badly to make the dazzling play on his night.

In his first at bat he came to the plate to the voice of Yankee great PA announcer Bob Sheppard, everyone stood on their feet for another ovation. This time, starting pitcher for the National League, Adam Wainwright dropped is glove on the pitcher’s mound, to join in on the ovation. Jeter once again tipped his cap and appreciation and politely told Adam “Let’s go,” imploring him to pitch, which prompted Wainwright to say no. Wainwright created a little controversy during the game telling reporters he threw Jeter a couple “pipe shots,” before he backtracked later on in the game.

Jeter lined a double in that first at bat and was driven home by the eventual all-star game MVP, Mike Trout. The American League would go on and win the game 5-3, securing home field advantage in the World Series, but the night was about Derek Jeter. His 14th appearance in the all-star game, where he hit for an average of .481. Jeter always shows up in the biggest moments.

The biggest moment of the night, however, was when he walked off the field in the top of fourth inning. American League, and Red Sox manager, John Farrell pulled Jeter after letting him take the field, to allow one last celebration of the Yankee captain, and the face of MLB. Alexei Ramirez replaced Jeter who embraced him with a hug, you can hear Jeter wish him good luck, and then he walked off the field as everyone stood on their feet once again. He tipped his cap to the fans, to the players in the National League dugout, then he went inside his dugout and hugged every member of the American League team. He came back out one more time to acknowledge everyone before his night was over.

“I didn’t know what was going to happen, my back was turned and I heard Cano yelling,” Jeter said. “But usually when he yells I ignore him. Then I saw Ramirez coming out. It was a wonderful moment that I’m always going to remember.”

It was truly a special night for a guy who has lived in big moments his entire career. He always delivered and this night was no different. No one knew what to expect, after last year Mariano Rivera moment at the all-star game in Queens, everyone figured it would be a special moment. The best players in MLB got to say their goodbye to Derek Jeter, along with adoring fans, it was a special moment, all the attention was on him once again, and as always he came through. When the lights were bright, no one shined brighter than Derek Jeter.

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