Derek Jeter is a sports hero in the tradition of Ruth, Gehrig, DiMaggio, and Mantle. Admired for his leadership, performance under pressure, and work ethic, Jeter is the face of the New York Yankees. He is also a quintessentially modern star, appealing to baseball’s diverse audience, savvy about dealing with the press, and publicly enjoying the fruits of his celebrity. Derek Jeter draws upon more than 5,000 news articles and features from the New York Times by the paper’s superb sports reporters and columnists, including Dave Anderson, Jack Curry, Buster Olney, and George Vecsey, as well as Tyler Kepner, who has written the introduction. This book is filled with entertaining stories, penetrating insights, and colorful voices: not only Jeter himself, but also George Steinbrenner, Joe Torre, Alex Rodriguez, and a host of players, past and present. In words and photographs, it covers Jeter’s rise, his style of play, his best moments on (and off) the field, his character as a teammate and a leader, and his place in Yankee history.
I’ve been thumbing through an advance copy of this one for the last ten days or so. And, it;s very well done. The photographs – and there are a lot of them – are all first rate. Really beautiful shots. And, the collection of stories from the Times makes this one a nice historical review of Jeter’s career, on and off the field, to date.
“Derek Jeter: From the pages of The New York Times” is a must have, in my opinion, for the serious Derek Jeter fan. And, it’s something that every Yankees fan should consider picking up. I also believe that any baseball fan would enjoy going through this book.
The other day, I heard Cal Ripken Jr. on the radio talking about young baseball players. And, he said something like “When it comes to ball players, Dad always said that we’re trying to put 40-year old heads on 20-year old bodies.”
The minute I heard that, I thought of Derek Jeter. He was that 40-year old head on a 20-year old body when he first came up. Really, truly, a special young player. And, the career that he’s put together since that time has been no less wonderful. We’ve been blessed to have such a player on the Yankees for all this time. And, “Derek Jeter: From the pages of The New York Times” is reminder of all that – plus a celebration of that career at the same time. I’m glad I had the chance to go through it.