2011 MLB All-Star Game: Derek Jeter No-Show Grates on MLB, Players
Last Friday, one day before reaching his milestone 3,000th hit, New York Yankees shortstop Derek Jeter announced that he would not be participating in the 2011 MLB All-Star Game due to "emotional and physical exhaustion" while in pursuit of his 3,000th hit.
Jeter, who returned from the disabled list on July 4 after injuring his calf, played in six games before the All-Star break, registering a 5-for-5 day on the day of his 3,000th hit.
Now, the outcry is coming from several different angles, including the media, MLB and several players.
New York Daily News reporter Mark Feinsand noted that one MLB official told him that "Derek Jeter has done everything right during his whole career. He was wrong on this one."
The same official told Feinsand that the game could have been "a celebration of his 3,000th hit" and that "he didn't have to play."
National League All-Star Lance Berkman told reporters that "I don't think it's my place to speak for others," Berkman said, according to the Daily News. "But for me, personally, if you get selected to be here, you have an obligation. You gotta be here. If you can go, you gotta go."
Carlos Beltran also chimed in. "I do believe, as a ballplayer, if you have no injuries, you should be here. The fans are the ones that vote for you and want to see you here," Beltran.
Other players however have come out in support of Jeter and his decision.
According to the New York Daily News:
Jeter's teammate, catcher Russell Martin, believes that Jeter's recent injury does play a role in declining to participate.
"He's just coming off the DL, he played a bunch of games in a row," Martin said, according to the Daily News. "I'm sure the fans wanted to see him here, he just got his 3,000th hit -- and the way he did it was incredible -- but he's got to take care of himself, and make sure that he's healthy. You have to respect that."
Although another injured New York shortstop, the Mets' Jose Reyes, said that "I want to come no matter what happens," an NL shortstop understands why Jeter might need to step away from the game.
"Everybody would want a piece of him here, and sometimes you need a little mental break," the Rockies' Troy Tulowitzki said, according to the newspaper. "I'm not going to say anything bad about him because I'm probably his biggest fan."
Although Chicago White Sox slugger Paul Konerko thought it would have been nice to have Jeter hear the cheers of the crowd for his accomplishment, the criticism is off base.
"I think it's one thing where everyone should just give him a slide, give him a break," Konerko said. "This guy has been doing it for a long time in All-Star Games, World Baseball Classics, etc. Representing the game in an awesome way, period. Maybe one time everyone should just give him a pass instead of him doing everything for everybody all the time."
The New York Yankees have also responded in support of their star shortstop.
Team president Randy Levine told ESPNNewYork that "This was Derek Jeter's decision. He was hurt for three weeks. He felt he needed the time off. We respect that. There weren't any major league officials criticizing him over the weekend. If someone was criticizing him, they should have the guts to not do it anonymously."
Tell us what you think—should Derek Jeter be in Phoenix, regardless of whether he's playing or not?
Source: New York Daily News
Source: ESPN New York