On Thursday, September 25, an era of baseball history comes to a close when iconic New York Yankees captain Derek Jeter plays in his final home game at Yankee Stadium.
Jeter will retire at the end of the season, marking the conclusion of one of the legendary Yankees careers of all time.
Jeter, a 14-time All Star, is Major League Baseball’s all-time leader in hits by a shortstop and the Yankees’ franchise leader in hits, games, stolen bases and at bats.
1. Derek Jeter’s Last Game at Yankee Stadium is Against the Baltimore Orioles September 25
The New York Yankees captain has been on a farewell tour during the season, playing in ballparks around the country for the last time. He has been presented with a long line of gifts from each opposing team, but on Thursday the Yankee Stadium fans finally get to say goodbye themselves.
2. Jeter is an Iconic Player in Franchise History
In the playoffs, Jeter batted .308 for his career with 200 hits, 61 RBI and 20 home runs. He helped the Yankees win five World Series titles from 1995 to 2009 and has been at the heart of many of the franchise’s signature moments of the last 20 years.
3. The Yankees Celebrated Derek Jeter Day September 7
Prior to their game against the Kansas City Royals — three weeks shy of the conclusion of his final season — the retiring Yankees captain was honored with a 45-minute ceremony that included appearances by Michael Jordan and Cal Ripken Jr.
Jeter had an opportunity to thank the fans that day:
“It’s kind of hard to believe that 20 seasons has gone by so quickly. You guys have all watched me grow up over the last 20 years. I’ve watched you, too. Some of you guys getting old, too. But I want to thank you for helping me feel like a kid for the last 20 years.”
Advertisers have also lined up to pay tribute to Jeter’s legacy with two massively popular commercials. The first, by Air Jordan/Nike aired during the All Star Break:
The second, by Gatorade, debuted in September:
4. Jeter’s Retirement Signals the End of an Era
Following the retirement last year of Mariano Rivera, who broke down in tears during his last mound appearance at Yankee Stadium, Jeter represents the last link to glory years past.
He is the last active member of the Yankees’ “Core Four” consisting of Jeter, Jorge Posada, Andy Pettitte and Rivera. The group propelled the Yankees to five World Series titles between 1996 and 2009.
5. Jeter’s Last Game Ever as a Yankee will be September 28 in Boston Against the Red Sox
Jeter is universally respected throughout baseball by players and fans for his quiet leadership, class and clutch play. No team saw more of Jeter than the rival Red Sox.
With the Yankees out of playoff contention, the 2014 regular season finale at Fenway Park will be Jeter’s last game in uniform. This season marks the third straight fall the Yankees have not qualified for the playoffs, which is something the franchise did in 16 times in Jeter’s tenure with the club.