What a week in baseball it was! I got goose bumps when hearing about Jeter beating Lou Gehrig’s hit record; I wish I could have been there. Every week that we get closer to the end of the season I think of all the great things that happened and all the stories that were created. This season was an epic one for me; this is the first time that I actually indulged in all baseball & followed most of the stories. And what an amazing experience it has been! I’m looking forward to next season. Also, I want to welcome Madeleine Rose to our team, she contributed and wrote some really good articles this week.
One of my favorite players who’s not having such a good season Grady Sizemore just had arthroscopic surgery on his left elbow. Ouch! The surgery took place on Wednesday morning and was performed by the team’s physician. And to make things worse, he is scheduled to undergo another painful lower abdominal surgery next Wednesday in Philly. I think that Grady hurt his groin early in spring training during an outfield drill & waited a whole season to have the procedure. Is this why he hasn’t had the best season this year? The poor guy has been playing in pain all year! Grady is a three-time All-Star and I was sad that he didn’t make it this year. Injuries had a major impact on Grady’s performance; after setting career highs in home runs (33), RBI (90) and stolen bases (38) last year, he hit .248 with 18 homers, 64 RBI and 13 steals in 106 games this season. Cleveland is expecting Grady to fully recover for spring training in February, let’s hope that he does, so that team has a better season next year! They need you Grady, get better!
Federal Agent, Jeff Novitzky, was suspected of illegally appropriating the MLB player's medical records and creating a list of players who tested positive for steroid use. Novitzky and anybody else who was involved in the leaking of confidential information, such as lawyers, prosecutors, investigators, and clerks, are at risk of facing jail time. There is a lot of controversy surrounding this case; some think that what Novitzky did was the right thing to do, while others criticize the government for breaking the law by seizing this information and sharing it with others. As of now, the courts are less focused on going after the baseball players who cheated, and more focused on targeting those who were involved in the scandal. Since the government is facing scrutiny for its unconstitutional actions, the courts should find it necessary to investigate and punish those who were involved. As for the players who were on the list, it may have been wrong for them to use steroids in the first place, but does that justify Novitzky's actions? Perhaps there could have been a better way to go about this. If this information is meant to be confidential, then that's how it should remain. If the people find it necessary to know if baseball players are using steroids or not, then there should be a monthly drug-tests that are not anonymous, just like with any other job.
Ichiro Suzuki is on his way to the Baseball Hall of Fame for the second time! He only needs 5 more hits to reach 200 hits this season, making it his 9th consecutive season with at least 200 hits per season. Ichiro already replaced Hall of Fame's first baseman George Sisler as a single-season hit leader, now he's on his way to break the record that he shares with Willie Keeler for making as many hits in 8 consecutive seasons. Ichiro is also the second fastest to reach the 2,000-hit milestone. Al Simmons did it in 1,390 games and Ichiro did it in 1,402. Ichiro has only been playing in the United States since 2001 and already he's on his way to the Baseball Hall of Fame for the second time! This extraordinary player is literally a legend in the making!
Since 1995, MLB has been giving the “best losing” team of each division a second chance at winning with the introduction of the Wild Card Race. Splitting the league from 2 divisions to 3 required an extra team, because a 3-team playoff would result in odd numbers. Basically, the teams in the Wild Card Race get a second chance at winning the playoffs, the fans get to watch their favorite team continue to play, and the owners can deepen their pockets a little more each year. Now, that may seem like a fair thing to do, giving everyone a second chance, but is it fair to the teams who won all the games and deservedly moved onto the playoffs? Of the last 28 Wild Card winners and the 9 that made it to the series, 4 have taken the title (perhaps even from possibly more deserving teams). The wild Card has changed the face and odds of the playoffs. This may keep the attention of some of the fans, but it may also cost the game’s integrity. The wild Card is a lot like steroids, it gives weaker teams/players a chance at artificial greatness!
“I really didn’t know what to do because we were losing at the time and I didn’t want to disrespect Tampa,” Jeter said. “I never dreamt about all of this.” After not hitting for a while Jeter broke out of his slump in a big way Wednesday night, with three hits Jeter matched Gehrig’s franchise mark, and the Yankees topped of a 4-2 victory over the Tampa Bay. Jeter tied Gehrig with 2,721 hits as a Yankee. He’s one of the classiest people to ever play this game,” Jeter said during an on-field, postgame television interview pumped over the stadium public address system. “It’s just kind of mind-boggling to have my name next to his.”
And if that wasn’t exciting enough, after a day off on Thursday Jeter broke the New York Yankees’ hit record held by Lou Gehrig for more than seven decades when he singled to right in the third inning Friday night. His opposite-field grounder against Baltimore gave Jeter 2,722 hits, one more than Gehrig, whose Hall of Fame career was cut short by illness in 1939. It was Jeter’s 268th hit against Baltimore, his most against any opponent. “Being a former captain and what he stood for, when you mention his name to any baseball fan around the country it means a lot,” Jeter said. “I think passing him makes it stand out that much more.” “The whole experience has been overwhelming,” Jeter said. “This is more than I could’ve imagined.”Jeter also stole second base in the first inning for his 300th career steal, which ranks second on the franchise list behind Rickey Henderson (326). Congratulations Derek! Derek got his first hit on May 30, 1995, at Seattle and set the Yankees mark with 14 seasons of splendid consistency. His two singles Friday night gave him 1,363 hits at home and 1,360 on the road.
Gehrig’s final hit came on April 29, 1939, a single against the Washington Senators. The Iron Horse had held the club record for hits since Sept. 6, 1937, when he passed Babe Ruth. Gehrig’s career ended suddenly in 1939 because of illness. Who can forget that heartfelt speech that he gave at the Yankees stadium on July 4, 1939 “I’m the luckiest man on the face of the earth!” Two years later, he died at 37 from the disease that would later bear his name.