Derek Cheater? Readers react
Was it gamesmanship or poor sportsmanship? Was it a smart play or outright cheating? Was it major league or bush league? One of the major storylines to come out of Wednesday night's series finale between the Rays and Yankees was something that happened in the seventh inning when one of the game's icons, Derek Jeter, faked getting hit by a pitch on a ball that clearly hit the bat. In fact, Jeter even admitted after the game that the ball hit the bat.
Here are some of your thoughts on what happened last night:
My thought is now, when young Little Leaguers try to pull the same stunt and say, 'Hey, Jeter did it so it must be an okay thing to do. I would request you and your colleagues take a more active role in trying to get MLB to take steps to try and stop it. Jeter saying, 'It's my job to get on base and if I had to act a little bit, I am going to.' The manager and the trainer contributed to the cheat as well. What if the Rays had lost?
I was FUMING last night watching the Rays and Yankees game. I’ve had enough! Is this baseball or Broadway? First, there's Victor Martinez and now Jeter. I've always respected him, but no longer. The fact we could have lost a pivotal game on his acting ability is nauseating. He should be ashamed of his actions. Hey Derek, be a man and play the sport with a little integrity. There is a real distinction in an umpire blowing a call and a player soliciting a blown call. I'm sure Derek would argue that, but there is a difference between getting called safe on a steal when you're pretty sure you were out and theatrics. In the former example, why would you argue? Bad calls are part of the game. One would be stupid to say, 'Hey ump, I was really out.' Bad calls happen numerous times throughout the course of a game. But, when a player knows the ball hits his bat, or the dirt, and then jumps around like he got hit so he can advance to first, well in my book, you're a CHEATER. Thankfully, for us Rays fans there's a little thing called karma that worked in our favor last night.
Michael McCoy, Crystal Beach
I absolutely hate the Yankees, for obvious reasons, but I have always respected Derek Jeter for being a true, honest, good-hearted baseball player. Until last night, when he put a free pass to first base before his integrity. I understand that this is a race for the AL East, but what he did amounts to cheating. While he claims it was a combination of vibration and acting, there is no way his left hand, the one he shook, could have been affected, considering it was nowhere near the bat when the ball struck the bat. If anything, he should have been shaking his right hand. But no, he fakes getting hit on the left wrist, cheating his way to first base. As if the Yankees' 1/4 billion dollar payroll isn't already cheating enough.
Jeremy Rawson, St Petersburg
After watching the Rays/Yankees game tonight, I was left with a very sad feeling. Why do baseball players think they have to cheat and lie to try to make points? Jeter's act of getting hurt was a big farce. If he had been hit with a ball as hard as that ball hit the knob of that bat, shouldn't he have needed ice and to rest his arm? But he was able to go ahead and play the bases. No one even looked at his arm minus his shirt to see if it had been hit. There are lots of young people in the stands watching the game. What is this teaching them? That it is okay to cheat and lie as long as the umpires go along with you? And when your leader comes out and tries to back up his players, that he gets ejected? Seems like pretty poor excuses for sports personalities. I love to watch the Rays play and they appear so clean-cut and honest. In the end the old adage that "cheaters never prosper" holds true.
Carol Berkshire Morrison, Dunedin
What a wounderful role model to my grandson and all the other youngsters that play baseball! I hope Jeter feels like a hero for being a fake in the Yankees and Rays game last night. It appears that if you are paid an exhorbant amout of money to play, you will do about anything. I just got back into baseball after the strike many years ago. Maybe I should have stayed away if there are people like Jeter in the game today.
Robert K. Reader, Clearwater