New York Yankees: If Captain Derek Jeter Goes Moving On Down New York Yankees: If Captain Derek Jeter Goes Moving On Down New York Yankees: If Captain Derek Jeter Goes Moving On Down

New York Yankees: If Captain Derek Jeter Goes Moving On Down

hen the idea of moving New York Yankees Captain Derek Jeter down in the batting order and letting Brett Gardner take over as the line-up’s leadoff hitter, I got pretty ticked off.

Honestly, my initial reaction was to immediately go on the defense. Considering this is after being subjected to the harsh words used all off-season about the Captain. I just wanted the man to catch a break, after skipper Joe Girardi made it clear that Jeter would be the at the top on Opening Day.

Now that I have had time to digest this idea, it might actually be a good one.

Jeter has only been lead-off since the start of 2009, other than filling in on occasion. He was cemented for the majority of 14 seasons as the Yankees #2.

Moving Jeter doesn’t concern me as much as whether Brett Gardner will be able to handle it. Last season Gardner struggled when atop the Yankee line-up.

Is Gardner speed going to hurt such an offensively dominant group and will his speed get wasted?

This made me wonder with batters like Mark Teixeira, Alex Rodriguez and Robinson Cano at the heart of your order, wouldn’t attempting to steal a base in essence become redundant?

Jeter has never been a power batter, so what if he starts hitting into double plays, as he did do that more in 2010? That immediately closes the door for Teixeira to hit a sac-fly to move the runners with two outs already.

Question remains if Jeter can still be a pest on the base-pads because we know that Gardner is one of the fastest guys in the league.

Jeter stole 48 bases in 2009-2010, which is almost double what he had in 2007-2008 when he posted 26 combined.

So now my alternative suggestion is, why can’t Curtis Granderson hit leadoff?

Granderson did it for the Detroit Tigers and even though he struggles a lot against lefties, Granderson sustains both power and speed.

Over his career, Granderson has an 81% stolen base rate and against right-handed pitchers he can flat out hit, averaging 25 home-runs, 13 triples and 28 doubles a season over his seven big league seasons.

So, why not split it up and have Granderson in against righties, so the pressure is not all on young Gardner’s shoulders by platooning them?

I know players hate this strategy, but it has been successful in the past and I am only making another suggestion so Gardner’s speed doesn’t become irrelevant or even worse hurtful.

It is pretty evident that the Yankees need to keep their speed where it does the most damage, because all three players mentioned are good regardless of what their number in the order.

Whatever works best for the team, but sliding the Captain under the bus comes way to easily so everyone has to learn to be fair.


  1. Bob says:

    I want to say first off That I love Derek Jeter. A great ballplayer & person. Unforunately this past year he has become known as Double play Derek. I believe putting him in the number 2 hole would be a detriment at this point in his career.Unless the adjustments that he's made with Kevin Long over the offseason will help him avoid that he should be left in the lead off position.It's been said they want him to pull the ball more. I disagree. His ability to go to right field…hitting behind the runner has been his trademark.Everytime he tries to pull the bsll he winds up hitting it on the ground at someone and we all know what happens then. We've seen him kill rallies doing this.

    Again Derek…much love & respect always but you have to stop hitting into DP's. Hopefully you & Kevin can work that out.

    • Kate says:

      Yes, but Jeter was great in the #2 spot in the line-up for years, so why not put Granderson in at lead-off against righties and test the waters??

      Jeter can be productive in either spot, it is Gardner whose speed is essential especially since the Red Sox got Crawford. Where will Gardner be the most productive???

  2. Scott says:

    Derek is the Captain, and rightfully so. As such, he should lead by example and volunteer to be dropped in the order. His trademark is hitting behind the runner, but unfortunately all defense know that and play him perfectly for a 4-6-3 DP. He hits the ball solidly enough that even a base-runner who starts stealing in front of him is often caught at second anyway since the SS covers when DJ hits. If not, it's at best a simple sacrifice – not what we need in front of Tex/A-Rod/R.C.

    Don't get me wrong – I love Jeter and we wouldn't be where we are today without him, but he's lost a step or two and his time at the top of the order (1 or 2) has passed. Time to move over and mentor the young guns.

    • Kate says:

      I agree with you Scott, but let's give Jeter a chance in the regular season before we throw him under the bus. I get the attitude "do what's best for the team" so whatever batting order is most effective should be used. For now my bet is Girardi will allow Jeter to start on Opening Day as the lead-off and allow him the chance to lose the job, instead of just taking it away.

      Why not Granderson? I worry as Gardner was much less productive batting atop of the order in 2010.

  3. Ozzie says:

    I am a die hard Yankee fan but I knew what these people who love Jeter more than the team. They can't get over how good he looks in the uniform. I have been telling Yankee fans for years the he is the most overrated player in the history of American sports. In the last four years he has struck out more than 380 times combine that with 85 double plays and a walk year batting average of .270. As a die hard Yankee fan I need his production but I don't see any hope. The conversation should that he has to bat 7th or 8th not first or second. His salary has always been unjustified by the stats because of these Derek Jeter lovers he is the highest paid shortstop in baseball. I' m sure they want to rename the team the New York Derek Jeters.

    • Kate says:

      Ozzie…doesn't leadership and setting an example count for anything anymore??? I don't agree that Jeter is the "most overrated player in the history of American sports" that is a bit harsh. I guess five rings would have been without Jeter is what you are saying??

  4. Ozzie says:

    Kate that's exactly what I'm saying. He was along for the ride for all of those rings, he wasn't the best player on any of those teams. Kate, I know why,but please give your reason as to why everyone gets paid by the numbers they produce except for Derek.You talk about leadership but I have never seen him defend any team mate. How do you pay him milliones for unmeasurables? I will say it again Derek Jeter is the most overrated player in the history of American Sports.

    • Kate says:

      Jeter has consistently come through in the clutch…..and he is one of the best postseason players.

      About 5000+ fans at every Yankee game is there because Derek Jeter is on the team.

      Also, Jeter is a great Captain and he sure does take on the leadership role but not for the TV cameras. The guys worship him all around baseball that doesn’t happen for no reason. Jeter looks darn good this Spring too….

  5. Ozzie says:

    So your saying he's worth all the money he makes because he looks nice in his uniform and he leads in a quiet way that can't be measured. What he does in the preseason is the only thing you can point to, to even rationalize that he is still on a team. About the other guys liking him he was once picked as the most overrated in baseball. The Yankees agreed with me and the reason they over paid for him again is because of fans like you. Oh and by the way you prove me right when your argument doesn't have a single stat other than that ridiculous number of fans. OVERATED and the funny thing is that you know it. Why don't you just rename the team the Derek Jeters I know that's what you want.

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