Sunday, December 27, 2009

Another Award For The Captain

Jeter made it four awards to go with the Yankees 27th World Series win when he was named the Daily News' New Yorker of the Year for 2009. He has already won the Hank Aaron Award, the Roberto Clemente Award, and the SI Sportsman of the Year.

Okay, let us here grant for the record what Derek Jeter did not do. He did not cure cancer. He did not save the polar bears. Nor was he the first shortstop elected President or named to the Supreme Court. One questions whether he could have landed a jet safely in the Hudson River.

But Jeter did accomplish something far more substantial than hitting for average and fielding his position. All across professional sports are lots of guys who put up big numbers and collect enormous paychecks for their production. They come and go from city to city. They are cheered. But hardly are they beloved.

Jeter is beloved. And that powerful bond - player to team to fans to city - has enabled him to buoy the pride of millions year in and year out, this year most of all.

This is a man who has the qualities adults admire and children can look up to. Somehow he combines enormous talent with hard work, riches with responsibility, fantastic success with confident modesty and intense competitiveness with true sportsmanship.
Jeter must hate to see 2009 go, it's been a great year for him.

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