|A sideways look at Derek Jeter's "retirement" home...|
Storming back from 0-3 will have to begin with C.C. Sabathia, but however far the Yanks get in such a pursuit, they'll be doing it without Derek Jeter. The Yankee captain and Florida real estate kingpin is sidelined with a broken ankle, suffered a few innings after he collected his record 200th post-season hit.
|A "98% tilt" would seem to be in order for the man who invented the faux verb|
"jeterate"....which, appropriately enough, is highly applicable to his own bad self.
So let's start with some random fun facts. Did you know, for example, that Jeter hit .388 this year when he was the DH? Too bad he wasn't playing in that capacity last Sunday night. 2012 was the first season in which Derek started more than 20 games at DH (he's up to 54 in his career at this point), and it's going to become an increasing feature of his future play.
While Jeter has been batting leadoff almost exclusively for the Yankees since 2009, he has batted second for them a good bit more often (1313 games in the #2 slot vs. 978 at #1). There is not much separation in his offensive numbers to be found in this breakout.
Jeter is a somewhat stronger finisher--.843 OPS in the second half as opposed to .817 in the first half.
Derek hits a good deal better when there are no outs in the inning (.886 OPS, as opposed to .791 with one out and .796 with two out). He's been a good deal less effective against relief pitchers (.754 OPS lifetime, as opposed to .865 against starters).
He has suffered a good bit against right-handed pitchers as he's aged. His SLG against them nosedived below .400 in 2007 and dipped under .350 in 2010-11. Though 2012 was better, he was still only back up to .377. He's compensated for this by hitting lefties at a prodigious rate for the past two years (close to .360). That's going to have to continue if he's going to be productive in the future.
The chart at left shows Jeter's breakout against the opponents he's faced in at least 100 games. It is quite probably a big surprise to discover that he's hit the worst against the Red Sox.
We can also break this down by ballpark, where we continue to see some interesting surprises. Jeter's favorite park over the years was Jacobs Field (now called Progressive Park), and it looks as though he's sorry that the Brewers switched leagues. He's hit extremely well in Oakland, where the ballpark is not at all welcoming to hitters.
He hit much better in old Yankee Stadium that in his team's new home, though that could be connected with aging. He didn't hit well in the Kingdome (Seattle's old park which favored hitters) but he's thrived in pitcher-friendly Safeco.
But we again see that Derek just doesn't hit well against Boston--and the data here makes it clear that it's a Fenway Park problem for the Captain.
|So many gift baskets, so little time...|
All of the above (and none of the clatter about his highly-discussed defensive deficiencies) serves to reinforce the notion that Derek will be a first-ballot Cooperstown selection five years after he hangs up his cleats. And, as our final diagram indicates, he's already something of a Hall of Famer with the ladies...in fact, it's that very thing that probably explains his lack of staying power in the batter's box as the game goes into the late innings. Given his preternatural penchants, Derek is almost certainly trying to tailor his inning-by-inning performance curve to fit the curves of these ladies--leaving himself some wiggle room for the post-game ritual (complete, as the world now knows only too well, with "gift basket").