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Thursday, February 28, 2013

Terence Moore: Without doubt, Jeter in a class by himself

Much like the tortured, repetitive skills of Flipper’s 5 1/2 hour version of “Brainwash”. (h/t Gerard Cosloy)

Only Jeter is Jeter. In fact, for one of the few times in baseball history—and perhaps, ever—somebody holds the undisputed role of baseball’s Most Revered Player.

When Babe Ruth was Jeter during the 1920s and the early 1930s, Lou Gehrig followed closely behind.

Joe DiMaggio always had Ted Williams.

While Stan Musial couldn’t separate himself from Yogi Berra, Mickey Mantle had both of them.

They all had Willie Mays and Hank Aaron.

Jackie Robinson? No question he was unique in so many ways when it came to his universal acclaim beyond balls and strikes. The same went for Sandy Koufax with his brilliant left arm that did the unprecedented and his reclusive nature that enhanced his mystique.

It’s just that Robinson and Koufax had several of those aforementioned baseball icons to share much of their spotlight.

Decades later, Cal Ripken Jr. had Tony Gwynn.

Then there is Jeter.

...Elsewhere, Albert Pujols was easing closer to Jeter during his 11 seasons with the St. Louis Cardinals. He was the new Musial, just as Jeter became the new Ruth, DiMaggio, Berra and Mantle—as in all of those players sparkling as lifetime members of their original club.

Then Pujols’ light dimmed after he bolted from the adoring arms of Cardinals fans to snatch the free-agent cash ($240 million, give or take a few million) of the Los Angeles Angels.

As for other challengers to replace or challenge Jeter these days, well, they just aren’t there.

Jeter is even more special than we thought.

Repoz Posted: February 28, 2013 at 05:53 AM | 67 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: yankees

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   1. I Am Not a Number Posted: February 28, 2013 at 07:31 AM (#4377482)
If Jeter ever gets tired of dating actresses and models, there's always that large contingent of middle-aged men with unabashed man crushes. I imagine that "Terence Jeter" is scrawled throughout the margins of Mr. Moore's notebooks.
   2. Rants Mulliniks Posted: February 28, 2013 at 09:00 AM (#4377493)
Moore obviously isn't a follower of the First Commandment.
   3. AROM Posted: February 28, 2013 at 09:01 AM (#4377494)
If changing teams diminishes a player's status, then cross Ruth, Aaron, and Mays off the list.

And explain to me why you disrespect the great Mariano, who's been around just as long as Jeter.
   4. Jose Is The Most Absurd Thing on the Site Posted: February 28, 2013 at 09:02 AM (#4377495)
Then Pujols’ light dimmed after he bolted from the adoring arms of Cardinals fans to snatch the free-agent cash ($240 million, give or take a few million) of the Los Angeles Angels.


The way Jeter selflessly plays for the league minimum really sets him apart from these other guys.

Moore is probably right though. I suspect that Jeter is in fact the Most Revered Player in the game both by those in the game and by fans. His popularity probably means there is more backlash against him than most but I can't think of anyone as generally respected as Jeter. Maybe Rivera but other than that I can't think of anyone. According to BBRef the 15 longest tenured players still active in 2012 were;

Vizquel
Thome
Oliver
A-Rod
Rivera
Isringhausen
Hawkins
Pettitte
Jeter
Giambi
Wright
Cairo
Ibanez
Abreu
Rolen

I think the only ones who could probably give Jeter a run for his money within the game are Thome and Rivera. I think Thome falls behind if you consider the fans opinion, he's well respected but not as well known as Jeter. Jeter is someone a non-baseball fan may know, Thome is not (and I love Thome and I'm not a big Jeter fan).

Still I do agree with Not A Number that this reads like something a 15 year old girl would write about her crush.
   5. Cooper Nielson Posted: February 28, 2013 at 09:26 AM (#4377511)
Giambi
Wright
Cairo


I didn't immediately know who "Wright" was, but (correctly) guessed Jamey. Hard to believe he's stuck around so long. One interesting thing I noticed about Jamey Wright:

Year A - 4.87 ERA, 120 ERA+
Year B - 3.16 ERA, 120 ERA+

That's the difference between 1999 Coors Field and 2011 Safeco Field.
   6. RMc is a fine piece of cheese Posted: February 28, 2013 at 09:33 AM (#4377515)
Forget it. You wouldn't understand anyway.
You wouldn't understand anyway.
You wouldn't understand anyway.
You wouldn't understand anyway.
You wouldn't understand anyway.
You wouldn't understand anyway.
   7. Tom Nawrocki Posted: February 28, 2013 at 10:23 AM (#4377528)
I can't figure out why Chipper Jones isn't on that list in post 4.
   8. AROM Posted: February 28, 2013 at 10:38 AM (#4377542)
Good question, since Vizquel is on the list and also retired. But I do think the author is restricting his comparison to active players.

For Thome, and Vizquel last year, I think they would fall below Jeter for 2 reasons: Lots of team switching in their later years, and moving into backup roles while Jeter is still out there every day, in his original position.
   9. Jose Is The Most Absurd Thing on the Site Posted: February 28, 2013 at 10:41 AM (#4377548)
I can't figure out why Chipper Jones isn't on that list in post 4.


I don't know either. When I did the PI search I specified "Active Players" so I assume that BBRef's engine knows he's retired but his page doesn't list a "Final Game". For what it's worth Jones would slot in between Oliver and A-Rod.
   10. JJ1986 Posted: February 28, 2013 at 10:41 AM (#4377549)
What about Ichiro?
   11. Rafael Bellylard: Built like a Panda. Posted: February 28, 2013 at 10:58 AM (#4377560)
Hey Terence, you might want to wipe your chin...
   12. Tippecanoe Posted: February 28, 2013 at 11:12 AM (#4377566)
Whenever Derek Jeter came to bat
We people in the nosebleeds cheered for him:
He was a champion from spikes to hat,
Clean-sampled, and imperially slim.

And he was always quietly arrayed
And he would always mumble when he talked
But still he fluttered pulses when he gave
Gift Baskets and they Twittered when he stalked.

And he was clutch - yes go and count da ringzz -
And admirably schooled in fundamentals
In fine we thought that he was everything
To make Terence Moore and Chass get sentimental.

So on we watched beneath that bank of lights
And went down in defeat and cursed the PEDs,
And Derek Jeter that calm summer night
Went home and put a starlet in his bed.
   13. Misirlou has S.C.M.O.D.S Posted: February 28, 2013 at 11:23 AM (#4377571)
I'm really confused about the rationale here. Since Pujols is disqualified because he changed teams, then as mentioned Ruth and others should be as well. If Chipper is disqualified because he is now retired, then Williams should be disqualified as he retired a few years before Musial. Mantle didn't come around until 11 years after Musial started, so why can't Mauer be a Jeter?
   14. catomi01 Posted: February 28, 2013 at 11:35 AM (#4377578)
Year A - 4.87 ERA, 120 ERA+
Year B - 3.16 ERA, 120 ERA+

That's the difference between 1999 Coors Field and 2011 Safeco Field.


wow
   15. AROM Posted: February 28, 2013 at 11:36 AM (#4377579)
BBref has 17 active players with 50+ career WAR. 13 of them are currently active, though some of the others may not be done (Abreu, A Jones, Thome, Rolen).

Of those 13, 6 are Yankees: A-Rod, Jeter, Pettitte, Sabathia, Mo, Ichiro. Only other team with more than 1 living legend is the Phillies (Utley, Halladay).

   16. vivaelpujols Posted: February 28, 2013 at 11:40 AM (#4377580)
is this a ####### joke?
   17. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: February 28, 2013 at 11:56 AM (#4377587)
is this a ####### joke?

It sure reads like it, but I think the guy is trying to be serious.

P.S. When it comes to being revered unanimously, meaning 100% with no qualifications, no matter how petty**, the only player who meets that standard would be Stan Musial.

**Murray Chass is not a human being, and his unsubstantiated ruminations about Musial's racism don't count.
   18. Misirlou has S.C.M.O.D.S Posted: February 28, 2013 at 11:57 AM (#4377589)
P.S. When it comes to being revered unanimously, meaning 100% with no qualifications, no matter how petty**, the only player who meets that standard would be Musial.


I can't imagine anyone having a problem with Gehrig.
   19. GregD Posted: February 28, 2013 at 12:06 PM (#4377594)
It is interesting how quickly Ripken's star has faded. In his last years, he was the Messiah to restore American work ethic, family values, and industrial might, all in one.
   20. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: February 28, 2013 at 12:07 PM (#4377597)
Decades later, Cal Ripken Jr. had Tony Gwynn.


I don't think Gwynn was revered quite the way Ripken was. Gwynn was revered for being a great hitter, but Ripken was revered for being a great player overall (even though Gwynn arguably had a better game overall), and for being a leader, and ironhorse, and being emblematic for what was great about baseball. It was Ripken who "saved baseball" with his consecutive games record, not Gwynn with his pursuit of .400. It was Ripken who did national ads, not Gwynn. It also helped Ripken played for an East Coast team, while Gwynn played for a West Coast team that hasn't had great fan support throughout the years.

I think Ripken was probably the most universally beloved player in the 80s. Ozzie, Mattingly and Gwynn (and maybe Kirby Puckett - oops!) were probably a tier below.
   21. BDC Posted: February 28, 2013 at 12:22 PM (#4377608)
the Phillies (Utley

That's a heck of a lot of WAR for a guy who hasn't been able to stay in the lineup. B-Ref lists only thirty players with more WAR in their first ten seasons than Utley. Wow.

Incidentally, as I've sometimes noted, Joe Garagiola did not like Musial (though I doubt he'd speak ill of him at this point). They had a falling-out over a business venture, and Garagiola blamed Musial somewhat bitterly. It's hard to be 100% loved in this world.

Charlie Gehringer is a HOFer nobody had anything bad to say about, but OTOH nobody had much to say about him at all. He and his wife were daily mass-goers for the 44 years (death do us part) that they were married. Musial and his wife were married over 60 years; I don't know that ultralong marriages necessarily prove good character (and I fall way short on that scale myself), but they might tend to indicate that someone is good at getting along with people.

Gehringer, like George Brett later on (who has now been married 20 years, wow again) did not marry till he retired from baseball. (In fact Gehringer did not marry till his mother died; he lived with her till then, when he was in his 40s.) I reckon Jeter will be in that category too, at this point.
   22. AROM Posted: February 28, 2013 at 12:48 PM (#4377630)
That's a heck of a lot of WAR for a guy who hasn't been able to stay in the lineup. B-Ref lists only thirty players with more WAR in their first ten seasons than Utley. Wow.


Most of that (38.6) was from 2005-2009, when Utley was able to stay in the lineup for an average of 151 games per year. That 5 year peak is better than all but a few HOF second basemen - gold glove quality defense, 100+ runs and rbi, 30 homers, .300 batting average, .900+ OPS, and 77/87 in stealing bases. He didn't just do everything, he excelled at everything.
   23. Jack Carter, calling Beleaguered Castle Posted: February 28, 2013 at 12:51 PM (#4377631)
I can't imagine anyone having a problem with Gehrig.


Couldn't stay in the lineup.

Still I do agree with Not A Number that this reads like something a 15 year old girl would write about her crush.
I don't know any 15 year old girls who wouldn't be mortified to have written such a paean. 12 years old sounds about right.

Who had a problem with Mays while he was playing?
   24. GregD Posted: February 28, 2013 at 01:07 PM (#4377641)
Who had a problem with Mays while he was playing?
Curt Flood, right?
   25. Pasta-diving Jeter (jmac66) Posted: February 28, 2013 at 01:19 PM (#4377650)
I can't imagine anyone having a problem with Gehrig.

ummm..Lou was a bit of a red-ass (more than a bit, actually)
   26. AROM Posted: February 28, 2013 at 01:35 PM (#4377661)
Steroid injections will do that.
   27. DanG Posted: February 28, 2013 at 01:38 PM (#4377664)
the 15 longest tenured players still active in 2012 were;

Vizquel
Thome
Oliver
A-Rod
Rivera
Isringhausen
Hawkins
Pettitte
Jeter
Giambi
Wright
Cairo
Ibanez
Abreu
Rolen

Most seasons played by players active in 2012:
25 Jamie Moyer
24 Omar Vizquel
22 Jim Thome
19 Darren Oliver
19 Alex Rodriguez
19 Chipper Jones
18 Miguel Batista
18 LaTroy Hawkins
18 Johnny Damon
18 Jason Giambi
18 Derek Jeter
18 Mariano Rivera
   28. michaelplank has knowledgeable eyes Posted: February 28, 2013 at 01:43 PM (#4377677)
I'm having a really hard time squaring my image of Ruth in the 1920s with the way in which "revered" is being used in this article.
   29. Bitter Mouse Posted: February 28, 2013 at 01:44 PM (#4377678)
I have never heard an even mildly negative thing about Thome. Not that that is really on point, but still.
   30. smileyy Posted: February 28, 2013 at 02:02 PM (#4377695)
How many times has Jeter oscillated between underrated and overrated? *that* has to be a record.
   31. smileyy Posted: February 28, 2013 at 02:04 PM (#4377699)

I have never heard an even mildly negative thing about Thome. Not that that is really on point, but still.


From a character point of view, or a value point of view?
   32. bjhanke Posted: February 28, 2013 at 02:18 PM (#4377715)
Where to start? Well, how about, "Now that Stan Musial has passed away, the slot for 'most revered player in baseball' is up for grabs. Each city and team will have a candidate, but there is real doubt as to whether any of those candidates is truly revered everywhere." Here in STL, Jeter is not revered at all; just another overpaid, egocentric (STL fans don't think that he would be playing shortstop unless he was insisting on it) Yankee. In STL, the most revered player would be home town boy Yadier Molina. The STL MRP who is not a Cardinal would probably be Ichiro or the leftover Pujols fans, of whom there are many. But fans of other teams should post up their own teams' MRP, instead of reading my guesses about their team and city.

Jolly's comment (#17), BTW, refers to Chass completely misunderstanding the story of Curt Flood and Musial and Biggie's restaurant. It is true that, in the early 1960s, Curt Flood and a date were turned away from the place. It is also true, and well documented in Flood's first autobio, The Way It Is, that this policy had been imposed by Biggie the restauranteur instead of Musial, the name behind the fame, but not actually involved in the daily business. And it is true that Curt had a talk with Stan the next day, and Stan got right on the phone to Biggie. By the day after that, Musial and Biggie's was no longer Jim Crow. Flood PRAISES Musial for this, as he praises Musial for abandoning the beach cabana he had in spring training the year the Gussie Busch got a friend to buy a hotel in Florida so that the black players could stay in the same hotel as the whites. Musial and Ken Boyer, who were able to afford cabanas, both abandoned them and stayed at the hotel with their black teammates. Flood has nothing bad to say about either one of them. Nor do Bob Gibson and Bill White, both of whom praise Musial and Boyer for this. As for Musial racism, when he died, the local paper, the Post-Dispatch, ran a photo of one of Musial's high school teams. It's integrated. There is only one black guy, but there is one. He's Buddy Griffey, the father of Ken Griffey Sr. and grandfather of you know who. Musial was used to integrated ball before he went professional. He was no form of racist.

The same problem exists in GregD's comment (#24). In The Way It Is, Flood compares Musial and Mays, saying that what they had in common as people was that they generalized their own good fortune in baseball, and looked at the game through the rose-colored glasses of their own successes. That excerpt is the source of the rumor that Flood had problems with Musial and Mays. But Flood makes no criticism of the two men, whom he goes out of his way to say that he liked and admired; he's just trying to write down what it was like to play with Stan Musial - what kind of personality he had. Flood and Bob Gibson could think that some of Stan's public speeches were short of criticism of MLB, and unintentionally hilarious, but neither man has anything bad to say about either Musial or Mays.

People are misreading Flood's book. Whether this is deliberate or not from Murray Chass, I don't know. But both accusations against Flood (and/or Musial and Mays) are based on passages in this book, and if you actually read the book with the context surrounding those passages, you will certainly note that there is no hostility towards Musial or Mays. You want The Way It Is, not the later Curt Flood autobio. TWII is my favorite of all baseball books, because it successfully places baseball into the context of the 1950s and 1960s, and is really the first book to do that within the framework of a player autobio. It's sort of like Ball Four, only written for adults rather than teenagers. Read it for yourself; then laugh at Chass.

- Brock Hanke

   33. JJ1986 Posted: February 28, 2013 at 02:23 PM (#4377724)
grandfather of you know who


Craig Griffey?
   34. vivaelpujols Posted: February 28, 2013 at 02:26 PM (#4377727)
How many times has Jeter oscillated between underrated and overrated? *that* has to be a record.


Depending on your opinion of his defense (GuyM makes a good case that Jeter is pretty negative on defense and this is backed up by WOWY http://www.insidethebook.com/ee/index.php/site/comments/best_worst_wowy_since_1993_through_age_34/), Jeter is a 60+ WAR guy and counting. So even the the most pessimistic viewpoint has him as a HOFer. I don't think he's ever really been underrated.
   35. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: February 28, 2013 at 02:32 PM (#4377732)
Brock,

Thanks for elaborating on the comment I made about Chass and Musial. I would have done so myself, except that Chass is by now such an isolated totem of self-parody that I can't summon the energy to refute his gibberish.

And Miserlou, you're right, I should have made Gehrig the other example of unanimous reverence along with Musial. My subconscious was probably paying too much attention to my dispeptic opinion of The Pride of the Yankees and not enough to the real life Gehrig.
   36. Bob Meta-Meusel Posted: February 28, 2013 at 02:35 PM (#4377733)
I can't imagine anyone having a problem with Gehrig.


Except for those years when he wasn't talking to Babe because of an off hand comment about Mama Gehrig.
   37. Misirlou has S.C.M.O.D.S Posted: February 28, 2013 at 02:39 PM (#4377736)
And Miserlou, you're right, I should have made Gehrig the other example of unanimous reverence along with Musial.


Ernie Banks* and Brooks Robinson also fit the mold, if more provincial and less well known.

* Though Durocher had a problem with Banks, but that speaks more about Leo than Ernie.
   38. WillYoung Posted: February 28, 2013 at 02:39 PM (#4377737)
The STL MRP who is not a Cardinal would probably be Ichiro or the leftover Pujols fans, of whom there are many. But fans of other teams should post up their own teams' MRP, instead of reading my guesses about their team and city.


In Minnesota, the MRP should be Joe Mauer, but instead it might actually be teh Jeter because a) the locals perceive Mauer as single-hitting wimp and b) Gardy's #### doesn't work in the playoffs against teh Jeter.
   39. Greg K Posted: February 28, 2013 at 02:43 PM (#4377743)
Re: the Yankees, may as well talk baseball since there's a game on.

Since when does Dan Johnson play 3B? I always figured him as a big lumbering Jack Cust/Adam Dunn type player. He just came up for the Yankees and I thought, surely that's not THE Dan Johnson. But it was...he doesn't seem like a big lumbering guy at all.
   40. JJ1986 Posted: February 28, 2013 at 02:49 PM (#4377754)
I think Tampa first tried him a bit at 3B because they like guys to play all over. Before that he was a 1B even in college.
   41. GregD Posted: February 28, 2013 at 03:18 PM (#4377772)
People are misreading Flood's book. Whether this is deliberate or not from Murray Chass, I don't know. But both accusations against Flood (and/or Musial and Mays) are based on passages in this book, and if you actually read the book with the context surrounding those passages, you will certainly note that there is no hostility towards Musial or Mays. You want The Way It Is, not the later Curt Flood autobio. TWII is my favorite of all baseball books, because it successfully places baseball into the context of the 1950s and 1960s, and is really the first book to do that within the framework of a player autobio. It's sort of like Ball Four, only written for adults rather than teenagers. Read it for yourself; then laugh at Chass.
Thanks!
   42. Bitter Mouse Posted: February 28, 2013 at 03:22 PM (#4377775)
From a character point of view, or a value point of view?


Character. Which is why it was not super on point.
   43. Rants Mulliniks Posted: February 28, 2013 at 03:41 PM (#4377787)
I can't imagine anyone having a problem with Gehrig.


You must be a stuck up Ivy Leaguer too, then!
   44. cardsfanboy Posted: February 28, 2013 at 04:13 PM (#4377810)
Of those 13, 6 are Yankees: A-Rod, Jeter, Pettitte, Sabathia, Mo, Ichiro. Only other team with more than 1 living legend is the Phillies (Utley, Halladay).


I was about to say that can't be right, the Cardinals have to have two, but only Beltran breaks 50... Holliday at 35, Carpenter at 32 and Yadier at 19.(even if they improve war's defensive component and remove the "inferior" league penalty, there is no way that Yadier makes it to 50 :) )


The problem I have with Jeter's image, is that it's so obviously cultivated that I just can't believe it. He reminds me of politicians too much because of that, I think he has more in common with Bill Clinton than he would with Stan Musial.
   45. bigglou115 Posted: February 28, 2013 at 04:38 PM (#4377848)
Can anybody ever remember a time when Jeter was seriously up for grabs though? Like, was there a time when Jeter's loyalty was really questioned by another team throwing a huge amount of money his way?

I think Jeter has stayed a Yankee for his entire career in no small part because the Yankees value him more than any other club would, and part of that is that his value to the Yankees may be higher than it would be to any other team. Does he really get loyalty points for that?
   46. Morty Causa Posted: February 28, 2013 at 04:39 PM (#4377849)
It's sort of like Ball Four, only written for adults rather than teenagers.


If you're a baseball fan (or a sports fan really), you're a teenager at most. Especially when it comes to discussing things like being revered. If insist on the mythological and folklore approach to appreciating baseball, you're a kid. Not that there's anything uniformly wrong with that.
   47. Morty Causa Posted: February 28, 2013 at 04:45 PM (#4377854)
Too, you have to distinguish between really being admired and revered on a truly Augustan scale, and simple vanilla liking someone because they were great players and are good persons. Williams was Prometheus Unbound (talking about how he was view beginning after his retirement), bringer of light. Stan was Andy Taylor, Mayberry RFD.
   48. RB in NYC (Now Semi-Retired from BBTF) Posted: February 28, 2013 at 04:46 PM (#4377856)
I think Jeter has stayed a Yankee for his entire career in no small part because the Yankees value him more than any other club would, and part of that is that his value to the Yankees may be higher than it would be to any other team. Does he really get loyalty points for that?
As Dwight Shrute says, I feel like part of what I'm getting paid for here is my loyalty. But, if there were somewhere else that valued that loyalty more highly, I'm going wherever they value loyalty the most.
   49. Hank G. Posted: February 28, 2013 at 05:01 PM (#4377871)
I can't imagine anyone having a problem with Gehrig.


Wasn't he rather notorious for being a cheapskate?
   50. Gonfalon Bubble Posted: February 28, 2013 at 05:32 PM (#4377914)
Gehrig's disgraceful example encouraged children to larrup.
   51. jack the seal clubber (on the sidelines of life) Posted: February 28, 2013 at 05:32 PM (#4377915)
I can't imagine anyone having a problem with Gehrig


He was notoriously short sighted. Given the name of the disease, how could he not see that coming?

Seriously, the only really good player I share a birthday with, unless you count Jerry Reuss.
   52. Ron J2 Posted: February 28, 2013 at 05:58 PM (#4377947)
I can't imagine anyone having a problem with Gehrig.


He and Ruth weren't precisely chums. Ruth was quoted to the effect that Gehrig's streak was a selfish stunt that cost the Yankees. (And Gehrig's awful final month numbers support the notion that he could have used the occasional day off. .308 /.429/.566)

Also, remember how Troy Percival called out Mo Vaughn after he wasn't on the field in one of those stupid milling around sessions?

There was a famous bench clearing brawl (hard slide by Carl Reynolds, heated words exchanged, Dickey breaks Reynolds' jaw, full scale brawl). Ruth and Gehrig sat it out. Staying in the dugout and laughing. Now I'm not saying either of them was wrong, but I'd be surprised if some of their teammates didn't resent them not coming out. Percival's attitude is pretty common in sports.
   53. Ron J2 Posted: February 28, 2013 at 06:12 PM (#4377960)
#28 The young Ruth certainly wasn't revered. During one of the Giants/Yankees World Series he's reported to have responded to heckling from the Giants (Johnny Rawlings in particular) with "Hey you guys, I don't mind if you call me ########## or ############ or sonofabitch -- but lay off the personal stuff will you?" (and if that sounds weirdly good natured he was totally serious. Tried to get Rawlings to fight him but backed down when Earl Smith volunteered instead.

For that matter, there's Ban Johnson to Babe Ruth, "It seems the period has arrived when you should allow some intelligence to creep into a mind that has plainly been warped."
   54. Morty Causa Posted: February 28, 2013 at 06:39 PM (#4377974)
The young Ruth certainly wasn't revered.


By whom? Other players at the time? Who is, really, all bullshit aside, universally revered? The best that can be hoped for is to be generally liked and admired in a fairly low-key way. When you consider those who made big forceful impressions, there's always a counter-insurgency.

Ruth was certainly revered and idolized by the fan to a degree of intensity and in numbers never witnessed before or since. Players and baseball personnel--meh, some yea, some nay, most <shrug>.
   55. michaelplank has knowledgeable eyes Posted: February 28, 2013 at 08:36 PM (#4378029)
#28 The young Ruth certainly wasn't revered. During one of the Giants/Yankees World Series he's reported to have responded to heckling from the Giants (Johnny Rawlings in particular) with "Hey you guys, I don't mind if you call me ########## or ############ or sonofabitch -- but lay off the personal stuff will you?" (and if that sounds weirdly good natured he was totally serious. Tried to get Rawlings to fight him but backed down when Earl Smith volunteered instead.


Exactly. That story is told in Cramer's bio, "Babe," along with numerous instances of rivals and even teammates calling him "N----- Lips" and other insults. Sure, some of that was par for the course among ballplayers of the day, but that's kind of the point.
   56. Ebessan Posted: February 28, 2013 at 08:39 PM (#4378030)
Only Jeter is Jeter. In fact, for one of the few times in baseball history—and perhaps, ever—somebody holds the undisputed role of baseball’s Most Revered Player.

It might be a homer call, but Roy Halladay? I think that the number of times that he's been criticized by anyone can be counted on one hand, if that. He's not terribly charismatic, but I've never understood why anyone considered Jeter to have a particularly glowing personality. Certainly he's not as famous, but what the hell does that actually have to do with being REVERED? Has Terence Moore ever written anything worth reading, because he is second only to Chass in terrible columns linked on BBTF.

(HOMER: I manlove Utley more, but there do seem to be fans who don't like him, and I would suggest that they stop watching baseball and then choke and die.)
   57. Perry Posted: February 28, 2013 at 09:05 PM (#4378042)
Late to the party here, but just wanted to add one anecdote to Brock's great post about Musial's racial attitudes. This was told by Bob Costas in his eulogy, so it's pretty well-known here, but in case you missed it: Musial walked into the NL all-star clubhouse at one point in the 50s. A group of African-American players were playing cards in the corner, no white players involved. Musial walked over, sat down, said "deal me in." And Costas pointed out, Musial ordinarily wasn't much for card-playing.
   58. The Yankee Clapper Posted: February 28, 2013 at 09:18 PM (#4378048)
. . . I've never understood why anyone considered Jeter to have a particularly glowing personality . . .

Jeter's status, whatever it might be to various people, is due to his accomplishments and lack of notoriety throughout his career. It certainly helps that his arrival coincided with the Yankee World Series Renaissance. Might be somewhat similar for any unanimous Rookie of the Year who won 4 World Series in his first 5 years - but no one has come close in the three-tiered playoff era.

This could be a tough year for the Jeter haters. He's likely to move to at least #6 on the all-time hit list, and if he can approximate last season, he could even pass Speaker for # 5.
   59. Ray (RDP) Posted: February 28, 2013 at 09:22 PM (#4378049)
Terence Moore: Without doubt, Jeter in a class by himself


This is why I stopped reading sportswriters years ago.

Except for one: Joe Sheehan. Though Sheehan can sometimes get wide-eyed for the True Yankees such as Rivera.
   60. Ray (RDP) Posted: February 28, 2013 at 09:27 PM (#4378053)

There was a famous bench clearing brawl (hard slide by Carl Reynolds, heated words exchanged, Dickey breaks Reynolds' jaw, full scale brawl). Ruth and Gehrig sat it out. Staying in the dugout and laughing. Now I'm not saying either of them was wrong, but I'd be surprised if some of their teammates didn't resent them not coming out. Percival's attitude is pretty common in sports.


There was an incident with the Red Sox in the late '80s -- my memory is hazy now so maybe Jose can recall this, but one of the Red Sox players got surrounded by the opposing team, tensions flaring, and coming to his aid from the stocked Red Sox bench was... Mike Greenwell. Greenwell got to the party, was surprised to find out that nobody was willing to fight him, and looked behind him to find that he was essentially alone. The rest of the Sox players were still sitting in the dugout, arms folded, blowing bubbles as they watched the action.

And incredulous and irritated Greenwell remarked to the press after the game that the team was made up of a bunch of "fairies."
   61. Hello Rusty Kuntz, Goodbye Rusty Cars Posted: February 28, 2013 at 09:28 PM (#4378054)
Seriously, the only really good player I share a birthday with, unless you count Jerry Reuss.


Still haven't forgiven Eddie Cicotte?
   62. Ray (RDP) Posted: February 28, 2013 at 09:34 PM (#4378058)
Ah:

GREENWELL LABELS TEAMMATES 'FAIRIES'

The Boston Globe (Boston, MA)
June 25, 1989 | Kevin Paul Dupont, Globe Staff


The fact that the Red Sox don't seem to have much fight in them this year is apparent to the players themselves, at least to Mike Greenwell.

According to a report in yesterday's Patriot Ledger, the Sox' star left fielder labeled some of his teammates "wimps" and "fairies" for not responding during a short on-field confrontation Thursday night with the Texas Rangers.

"We have a bunch of wimps on this team," Greenwell told the Ledger's Nick Cafardo. "When are we going to act like a team and stop acting like a bunch of fairies?"

Greenwell said he was irked to see some of his teammates still sitting in the dugout after Sox pitcher Mike Smithson triggered …
   63. cardsfanboy Posted: February 28, 2013 at 09:38 PM (#4378063)
Late to the party here, but just wanted to add one anecdote to Brock's great post about Musial's racial attitudes. This was told by Bob Costas in his eulogy, so it's pretty well-known here, but in case you missed it: Musial walked into the NL all-star clubhouse at one point in the 50s. A group of African-American players were playing cards in the corner, no white players involved. Musial walked over, sat down, said "deal me in." And Costas pointed out, Musial ordinarily wasn't much for card-playing.


That is a Willie Mays story, and it is a great story. Between that, the Flood story(which is a positive point of his attitude towards race, not the negative that Chass portrayed it to be) and the Joe Black story, there is very little doubt about what type of man Stan was.

Seriously, the only really good player I share a birthday with, unless you count Jerry Reuss.

Mine is Vida Blue...but on my birthday Stan Musial was inducted in the hof(one year before I was born) same with Ozzie Smith(except the year).
   64. Hello Rusty Kuntz, Goodbye Rusty Cars Posted: February 28, 2013 at 09:39 PM (#4378065)
The Greenwell story has evolved.

SunSentinel, 1990:
That marked in contrast to 1989, when former Red Sox reliever Joe Price was the only player to leave the dugout during an on-field disturbance, causing Greenwell to call his teammates ``wimps and fairies.``


Bill Simmons, 2001:
For instance, back in the '89 season, Red Sox reliever Joe Price was threatened by a batter, and Mike Greenwell charged out of the dugout to defend his teammate. Unfortunately for Greenwell, nobody else in the Sox dugout budged, and Greenie ended up looking like Bluto during the first part of his "It isn't over. ... Nothing is over!" speech in "Animal House." In a related story, Boston missed the playoffs that year.

   65. SoSH U at work Posted: February 28, 2013 at 09:39 PM (#4378066)
People are misreading Flood's book. Whether this is deliberate or not from Murray Chass, I don't know.


According to that ill-informed hatchet piece, Marvin Miller made those claims against Musial. But ol' Marv was making a bunch of idiotic claims at that point, at least as reported by the Chasshole.

   66. cardsfanboy Posted: February 28, 2013 at 09:53 PM (#4378071)
According to that ill-informed hatchet piece, Marvin Miller made those claims against Musial. But ol' Marv was making a bunch of idiotic claims at that point, at least as reported by the Chasshole.


I thought Marvin was making claims against Musial, that Musial conspired with the owners to make sure that the players didn't get money(Conspired might be a little over the top, but basically that Musial was serving the owners interests and not the players). I thought Chass decided to add that piece about Flood going to Biggies, implying that Musial allowed his name to be put on a business that practiced segregation, and that it was indicative of the type of person he was. He didn't distort the story as much as put his own personal spin on it. (Mind you, he did distort the story somewhat, but his point was more about the fact that Musial's allowed his name on a business that did that, than the actual events behind what happened)
   67. SoSH U at work Posted: February 28, 2013 at 10:14 PM (#4378080)
I thought Marvin was making claims against Musial, that Musial conspired with the owners to make sure that the players didn't get money(Conspired might be a little over the top, but basically that Musial was serving the owners interests and not the players). I thought Chass decided to add that piece about Flood going to Biggies, implying that Musial allowed his name to be put on a business that practiced segregation, and that it was indicative of the type of person he was. He didn't distort the story as much as put his own personal spin on it.


That's not the way it reads. Murray definitely added his own inimitable bile to it, but it's based on a Miller account of the dinner (assuming Murray was having these conversations with Miller, and not a doll in his attic he calls Marvin that shares his bitter outlook on life).

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