Living in NJ and watching the Yankees on a consistent basis (since I hate them with every bone in my body) I can say that Jeter is probably one of the most overrated players in sports.Originally Posted by Cedric
Now don't get me wrong, I think he is a really good ballplayer and one who I would love to have in Cincy, but putting this guy up there among the best players in the game makes me sick. He is living a charmed life and because of this, everyone thinks he is the greatest.
Anyone who plays for the Yankees gets the automatic bump in reputation. Is it because of the media circus that takes place here? Is it because of the fact that they are always on national television? Or is it because of the fact that they have been in the postseason for the last 10 or so years? I think it is the postseason factor.
Now everyone can say that without Jeter, the Yankees wouldn't have been in all of those postseasons. True? I can't really argue either way, but personally I'd say he was a nice part of it. But look back at the "core of the Yankees dynasty" and you'll see 4 players: Posada, Jeter, Bernie and Mariano. Those guys have been there throughout this run. Now when is the last time they won a WS? 2000. All of those guys have been in NY since then, but they've lost players like O'Neill, Tino, Cone, Key, etc etc since then. So why does "the core" get all the pub? Beats me. As far as I am concerned, these 4 have added ARod, Sheff, Unit, Mussina, Giambi and other and, in NY's eyes, haven't won squat since 2000.
Let's look at some of Jeter's accolades. 2 Gold Gloves? Throw those in the trash. Not only is he an overrated fielder, but the Yanks bought the reigning GG shortstop and moved him to 3rd. Why would you take an MVP and GG shortstop and move him? Not to hurt Jeter's feelings? Any way you look at it, it was a dumb baseball move.
Throw out his All-Star appearances also. Torre put him on the roster almost every year. One year, they had ARod, Tejada, Vizquel, Nomar and Jeter. How on Earth do you have 5 shortstops on the roster? That year they had 1 second baseman on the roster. So you mean being the 5th best SS is better than the 2nd best second baseman? Sorry, but that makes no sense. Torre was extremely biased when he filed out his rosters and even though he probably should have made the roster a few of those years, let's not use that as an argument of how great he is. Think about when Larkin used to be Ozzie's backup and how much sense that made.
So let's go to his stats. He has 2 categories where he really lights it up. Runs and hits. Jeter will finish with over 3000 hits. No problem there. His career average is .314. Pretty good. But is it enough to say that he is great? I think 3000 hits is great, but what if it takes you over 10000 ABs to get them? Doesn't it diminish the value even a little? Hitting in one of the best lineups in baseball gives him many more ABs than other players. For everyone who complains about Sutton, Perry and Neikro taking so much time to get their final wins, look at how many ABs Jeter has. Same argument for runs scored, especially hitting in front of the people he does. Gwynn hit .338 in his career with 3141 hits. Jeter will probably end up in the low .300s. Not bad, but I wouldn't say Jeter is a great hitter. Gwynn was one of the best.
Is Jeter a winner? Sure, he has won a lot in his career. But so has Brosius, Sojo, Stanton and a lot of other guys on those same teams. If Jeter really has all of these intangibles and is such a winner, then why, with the highest payroll is baseball, haven't the Yanks won a WS since 2000?
And yeah, that was one hell of a play he made in Oakland. But when you are a good player and play 115 postseason games in your career (all on national TV) then you are bound to do something good. If Eckstein makes that play everyone forgets about it in a month. If Jeter makes the play, his intangibles are off the charts and it ends up in baseball lore for eons.
Don't get me wrong, Jeter is a very good ballplayer. But let's reserve the accolades for those who really deserve it. Being the face of the Yankees, handling a media circus and having a good play in the playoffs shouldn't be enough to get you in on the first ballot or make you one of the best players in the game.