New York Yankees legendary shortstop Derek Jeter now stands among the immortals of baseball history.
On Wednesday (Sept. 8), Major League Baseball inducted Jeter into the Baseball Hall of Fame with the class of 2020.
Jeter headlined the class of inductees, which included Colorado Rockies outfielder Larry Walker, St. Louis Cardinals catcher Ted Simmons and former MLB Players Association executive director Marvin Miller.
The COVID-19 pandemic forced MLB to delay the ceremony at Cooperstown, N.Y., for more than 14 months, according to Yahoo! Sports. A class of 2021 inductees would have joined them but no players were elected for this year.
Jeter, who won five championship rings with the New York Yankees in the late 1990s and early 2000s, has an impressive resume. The team’s captain, a 14-time All-Star, accrued 3,465 hits and had a lifetime .310 batting average.
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ESPN called Jeter’s “Flip Play” “the most iconic, most brilliant play” in his career and many call it one of the best ever in MLB postseason history, requiring athleticism, agility and awareness to pull off.
The surprising play occurred in the 2001 American League Division Series against the Oakland Athletics. Oakland led the best-of-five series 2-0 but tailed the Yanks 1-0 in the bottom of the seventh inning.
With a runner on base, Terrence Long hit a hard ground ball over the first-base bag. Right fielder Shane Spencer fielded the ball cleanly but overthrew two Yankee infielders.
Jeter ran across the diamond to field the ball. From foul territory, Jeter made a backhand flip to catcher Jorge Posada, who tagged out runner Jeremy Giambi who was sprinting to home plate.
The Yankees won the game 1-0, however they went on to the World Series to lose to the Arizona Diamondbacks four games to three.
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