Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Jeter To Seek 6 Year Deal?

My little 10 month old likes to watch The Wiggles as he drinks his bedtime bottle. After it ended and my wife took the little guy to bed, she left the TV on but turned the sound off. I was walking between rooms when I saw something that caught my eye. The TV was tuned to the MLB Network and the story was about Derek Jeter. I couldn't hear what they were saying and before I turned on the sound the story was over. Anyway, the blurb they had on the screen read something like, "Report: Jeter to seek 6-year deal when contract expires." My interest was piqued.

Now being the dope that I am, I totally forgot I could rewind live TV to hear the story. So where did I go? of course. That directed me to Sports Illustrated's Jon Heyman. He had an article up within his "daily scoop" titled, "Could Jeter seek six years?" There wasn't really much to the "story." It was more speculative than anything else. The basis for the piece was that 2 executives from "competing teams" felt Jeter could ask for a 6-year deal. What a non-story? But since the topic was brought up, I'll play along.

Here's my thought: If Jeter wants a 6-year deal, the Yankees should give him a 6-year deal. I don't think Derek is the type of person who is going to want to continue to play baseball if he thinks his skills are diminishing. If he signs to play for 6 more years, it's because he knows he can play at a high-level for 6 more years. At least that's how I look at it. Now there's no guarantee that 7 years from now Jeter can still play at a high level, but I think Jeter has earned the right to give it a shot. Derek is a competitor. I don't see him playing if he can't compete. I'd like to think Derek knows best when it comes down to it.

It would also mean that Jeter would get to make a run at the all-time hit record. Jeter is entering this season with 2747 hits, trailing Pete Rose's record by 1445 hits. Jeter would need to average about 207 hits per year to reach Rose's record of 4192. It's a stretch, a big one at that, but it's doable. Personally, I think he'd need to play another year to pass Rose, but that's just me.

Of course though this will probably all come down to money. If DJ were to ask for a 6-year deal, I'd hope he wouldn't ask for as much as he'd probably get if he took a shorter contract. If Jeter takes a smaller salary, it could give the Yankees some payroll flexibility. I'm really curious to see what the final terms of his deal ends up being.

Lastly, another reason I want him to sign a longer deal is a selfish one. My oldest son is turning 3 this August. I'd love nothing more than for him to get to see Derek play and actually remember it. I hope he'll get that chance.

So am I nuts for wanting the team to sign Jeter to a 6-year deal, assuming of course that's what DJ asks for? It's not ideal to have a 42-year old SS, but this is Derek Jeter we're talking about. Feel free to share your thoughts.

Peace, love and Pinstripes,