It sounds like the ball is in Derek Jeter’s court.
Jeter was expected to play the final game of his career Sunday at Fenway Park as the New York Yankees and Boston Red Sox close out the 2014 regular season. Now that the Yankees officially have been eliminated from playoff contention, however, it’s entirely possible Jeter could decide to play his last game Thursday at Yankee Stadium.
“I will leave that up to him — very similar to what I did with (Mariano Rivera),” Yankees manager Joe Girardi told reporters Wednesday morning at Yankee Stadium. “In my mind, I really thought that Mo would want to play that inning in center field and it never happened. So I’ll leave that up to Derek. I don’t see any reason I wouldn’t do it any different.”
Girardi told reporters after the Yankees lost to the Baltimore Orioles on Wednesday afternoon — officially eliminating New York from playoff contention — he plans to talk with Jeter on Thursday to determine how they’ll tackle this weekend in Boston. Rivera, who went through a season-long farewell tour last season, was expected to play an inning in center field during the Yankees’ final series in Houston, but the longtime closer was so touched by his final appearance at Yankee Stadium that he never played again.
Jeter was asked after Wednesday’s game whether he’ll play this weekend at Fenway. The Yankees captain told reporters it’s too far ahead to say and that he’s focused on Thursday’s game against the Orioles. Typical Jeter.