Posted on January 25, 2009 @ 2:04 am
by Denise I Smithson

Derek Jeter

Born in Pequannok, New Jersey in June of 1974, Derek Jeter and his family later moved to Michigan where Jeter played basketball and baseball at his Kalamazoo, Michigan high school. He was chosen by the New York Yankees as the sixth overall first round pick of the 1996 draft.

Jeter soon established himself as a one of the most qualified players in the league. He received the Rookie of the Year award in his first season with the Yankees, and continued to develop his game year by year. He consistently delivered at the plate and performed outstanding fielding as a shortstop. Jeter was the first rookie in 34 years to play the shortstop position during his first season. He has since become one of modern baseballs most recognizable stars.

Jeter was instrumental in the Yankees World Series sweep of the Atlanta Braves in 1995. In 1996, Jeter scored five runs in five hits. Though the Yankees didnt make it to the World Series in 1997, Jeter had impressive batting statistics that year, with a .291 batting average, 10 home runs, and 70 RBIs. By the end of his 1998 season, he had earned a .324 batting average, with 19 home runs, 84 RBIs, and 203 total hits. He was the leagues high scorer with 127 runs.

In 1999, Jeter and his agent were unable to come to any agreement with the Yankees on his new contract so they entered into arbitration with George Steinbrenner, the owner of the Yankees. The goal was to come up with an agreeable figure to be paid for his new contract. Jeter came out of arbitration a winner with one-year $5 million contract. This made Jeter the highest paid player in baseball history with just a few years of service.

Jeter continued to focus on his game. This focus paid off; he ended the 1999 season by breaking most of his personal records. He had 24 home runs, 134 scored runs, 9 triples, 102 RBI’s and a .349 batting average. He was awarded All-Star for the second time.

In game four of the 2000 World Series match between the New York Yankees and the New York Mets, Jeter kicked off the game with a home run on the very first pitch. In his second at-bat, Jeter hit a triple and scored, giving the Yankees a comfortable three-run lead. The Yankees went on to win the 2000 World Series in five games.

Even though Jeter has achieved superstar status, he spends time giving back to his community. With his father, Jeter founded the Turn 2 Foundation. The foundation supports high-risk kids and provides alternatives to drug abuse. It encourages academic success and healthy lifestyle choices. Turn 2 has branches in Jeters hometown of Kalamazoo, and in New York City, where he now lives.

Jeter has the distinction of being the first player in history to receive both the World Series MVP and All-Star Game MVP awards in a single season. He won both awards in 2000. He has been an American League All-Star seven times.

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