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Wallace Matthews: Derek Jeter; desperate cheater

Sep 16, 2010, 3:33 PM EDT

This morning I wondered whether one of the New York columnists or talk radio guys would use the phantom hit-by-pitch thing as a pretext for changing the Derek Jeter narrative from “Captain Perfect” to “Desperate, flawed tragedy” or something like that. It took most of the day for us to get there, but ESPN New York’s Wallace Matthews didn’t disappoint!

Hard to say if he really goes all the way, though. I mean, he certainly starts down that road yet somehow manages to take a left turn about two-thirds through to slam A-Rod somehow.  Gotta give Matthews bonus points for those kinds of acrobatics.

  1. birdmancometh - Sep 16, 2010 at 3:48 PM

    Jeter is so clutch!

  2. klbader - Sep 16, 2010 at 4:08 PM

    I know manual transmissions have fallen out of favor here in the states. but has anyone had the sense to market a Jeter-shaped clutch pedal or clutch pedal cover? I guess this would be a bigger hit if the people in NYC actually drove cars, but still, I think I might have something here!

  3. Joe - Sep 16, 2010 at 4:26 PM

    “(Yeah, he didn’t pay his property taxes in Florida a few years back, but all those who believe fudging your tax returns is a crime, please raise your hand.)”
    *Raises Hand*
    He even takes a shot at sabermetrics. I bet Ken Tremendous reads stuff like this and thinks, “Man, back in the day I would have hit that one out of the ballpark.”
    And to be fair to Jeter, calling him a “cheater” for this is like calling Jason Donald a cheater for taking first base when Jim Joyce blew the out call. The ump gave him the base, what’s he supposed to do, refuse it?

  4. Mr. Heyward - Sep 16, 2010 at 4:33 PM

    I’d totally buy a Clutch-Jeter clutch.

  5. Ace2000 - Sep 16, 2010 at 4:36 PM

    I was just about to post the same thing, but you beat me to it. So yeah, I’m raising my hand too. I really enjoy the fact that on Matthews’ morality meter, faking an HBP is a far more egregious offense than tax evasion. NY sports media at its finest!

  6. Utley's hair - Sep 16, 2010 at 4:53 PM

    My old stick shift had the clutch pedal, so I’m all for a Jeter clutch cover.

  7. Simon DelMonte - Sep 16, 2010 at 4:59 PM

    The second I read that piece, I copied it to paste into the earlier discussion, just in case you missed it. We can always count on you being on top of things, and on Wally to write columns like this. As a baseball writer, he remains a fine boxing reporter.

  8. Mrsteve - Sep 16, 2010 at 5:04 PM

    Jeffrey Mayer
    Same thing. He said Turasco needed to jump for the ball even though it was obviously not a homerun. Jeter has been a cheater for years. This is nothing new.

  9. klbader - Sep 16, 2010 at 6:05 PM

    I just wonder how much of this non-event is in some way related to the current culture’s obsession with ascribing meaning to trivial things. I sound like an old man here (I am 38), but it seems like facebook status updates and twitter and things of that nature function to make insignificant things (“I’m cooking dinner!”) into something people would want to know about. It seems like there is nothing too insignificant to which we as a society want to ascribe meaning. I know this is an oversimplification, but if Reggie Jackson or Mike Schmidt or Willie Stargel or Dale Murphy or Don Mattingly had done exactly this same thing, nothing would have been said about it. Why? Because no one would have cared.

  10. bbeer - Sep 16, 2010 at 6:32 PM

    Touche. Good call. Even though i hate Jeter.

  11. Flup - Sep 16, 2010 at 6:47 PM

    Anyone who knows anything about world religions will tell you that people have been ascribing meaning to non-events for years. It’s nothing new.
    “The gourd! Follow the sacred gourd!”

  12. Kevin S. - Sep 16, 2010 at 8:19 PM

    The FJM guys are taking over Deadspin for a day again sometime soon – send it to them!

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