Little League® Graduate, Derek Jeter, Announces His Retirement
Derek Jeter’s legacy is going to include being one of the best overall shortstops in Major League Baseball history, one of the best players in New York Yankees history and one of the finest graduates of Little League Baseball®.
The former Westwood Little Leaguer from Kalamzoo, Mich., Jeter announced his retirement on his Facebook page yesterday, February 12. This year, 2014, will be his last in pinstripes.
“From the time I was a kid, my dream was always very vivid and it never changed: I was going to be a shortstop for the NY Yankees,” Jeter wrote in his statement. “It started as an empty canvas more than 20 years ago, and now that I look back at it, it’s almost complete. In a million years, I wouldn’t have believed just how beautiful it would become.”
Jeter, who will turn 40 on June 26, made his first appearance in the bigs in 1995. He ranks ninth all time with 3,316 hits, a .312 career batting average and 256 home runs. In Yankees history, he ranks first in games played, at-bats, hits and stolen bases.
“Congrats to Derek Jeter on the announcement of his retirement today,” Joe Torre wrote on Twitter. Torre was honored with the 2013 William A. “Bill” Shea Distinguished Little League® Graduate Award, and was Jeter’s manager from 1995 to 2007. “A class act and character both on and off the field. A role model to many!”
A five-time World Series champion and the 1996 AL Rookie of the Year and was named MVP of the 2000 World Series. That same year, Little League honored Jeter’s parents, Charles and Dorothy Jeter, as its 2000 Little League Parents of the Year.
"We’re obviously very proud of Derek being a Major League ballplayer, but we’re also proud of him for setting up his foundation," said Charles Jeter in a 2000 Little League release. "This foundation (Turn 2 Foundation) means so much to him because it helps so many children."
Little League looks forward to celebrating its 75th Anniversary in 2014 by recognizing the millions of Little Leaguers, like Derek Jeter, who have contributed to Little League’s Big Legacy.
Photo courtesy of the Jeter Family