Derek Jeter ‘Ready For This To Be The End’ After Emotional Fenway Goodbye


Sep 28, 2014

derek jeterBOSTON — It wasn’t going to beat his final game at Yankee Stadium. That just wasn’t going to happen.

Derek Jeter could have gone 4-for-4 with four home runs Sunday at Fenway Park and the enduring memory from his 20-year career’s home stretch still would have been the walk-off single that sent his New York Yankees home winners in his final game in the Bronx.

“You can’t top what happened Thursday,” Jeter said after walking off a major league diamond for the last time. “… New York’s been a special place for me. The way that game ended, at home — you couldn’t have written a script (better).”

Jeter admittedly was nervous entering that game, even saying that he at times hoped the ball would not come his way. That anxiety only amplified the euphoria that followed the dramatic finish, and some speculated whether the shortstop would even play as the Yankees closed out their season this weekend in Boston.

He did not Friday, choosing to watch the first game of the Yankees-Red Sox series from the visiting dugout. Jeter returned for the season’s final two contests, though, and looked as if a great weight had been lifted off his shoulders. The memories had been made. Now, it was about having fun.

“It felt like the time was right,” Jeter said of taking off his jersey Sunday after New York’s season-ending 9-5 win. “My emotions were so all over the place on Thursday in New York, and when when I got here, I was ready. I was ready for my career to be over with. I’m happy I got to come play here for a couple of games, but I’m ready for this to be the end.”

The Red Sox welcomed Jeter with open arms, bringing back a legion of Boston sports legends to honor the shortstop in a pregame ceremony even he — after doing the same song and dance in each city for months now — was blown away by.

“It was unbelievable,” Jeter said. “I didn’t know anything about it — what was going to happen, who was going to be there. All the things that they’ve done, it was hard to envision what would happen because this is a place where we’ve been an enemy for a long, long time. For them to flip the script this last time coming here, it made me feel extremely proud and happy that I was a part of this rivalry.”

Jeter said the reality of being a retired Major League Baseball player won’t sink in for another few weeks, when his now-former teammates begin ramping up their offseason training regimens in preparation for next season. One thing’s for sure, though: he’s excited to see what life after baseball brings.

So, what’s the next move for the future Hall of Famer?

“I don’t know,” Jeter said. “And that’s a good thing.”

Photo via Greg M. Cooper/USA TODAY Sports Images

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