Following a walk-on single to win his final home game this week, Derek Jeter officially ended his 20-year career on Sunday (Sept. 28) with an RBI infield single at Fenway Park.
The single came in the third inning, after which Jeter made the decision to leave the game to a standing ovation from both Boston Red Sox and New York Yankees players, as well as fans.
Jeter finishes his career with 3,465 hits, the sixth-most in baseball history… and a batting average of .310.
The afternoon began with a pregame ceremony that included a long historic video that highlighted the Red Sox and Yankees rivalry. The linescore had “With Respect 2 Derek Jeter” appear one letter at time… after which Jeter was called onto the field, alone, at shortstop, as all the players stood outside their dugouts, joining the fans in a standing ovation.
Jeter was then greeted by seven Red Sox greats, led by Carl Yastrzemski, followed by the Boston Bruins’ Bobby Orr, the New England Patriots’ Troy Brown and the Washington Wizards’ Paul Pierce, who sported a Boston Celtics shirt. Next, the Red Sox players came out to visit Jeter, led by David Ortiz with the final player, Dustin Pedroia, presenting him with a second base inscribed with No. 2.
The Red Sox also donated $22,222.22 to Jeter’s Turn 2 Foundation. They also gave him a custom-made “RE2PECT” Fenway placard… and finally, had a gospel singer Michelle Brooks Thompson belt the tune “Respect” to Jeter.
“I think it is an end of an era,” Yankees manager Joe Girardi said. “I think it is the end of the era of those four guys. I don’t know if you’ll see that in sports again, in all of sports. I don’t know if you will see four guys come along and have so much success. It just doesn’t happen very often. So, yeah, I think it is the end of an era.”