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Derek Jeter goes 0-for-3 in fourth rehab game while also struggling defensively at shortstop

Jul 10, 2013, 10:48 PM EDT

jeter rehab getty Getty Images

Derek Jeter just completed his fourth rehab game.

According to WFAN’s Sweeny Murti, who was on the scene Wednesday at Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre, the veteran shortstop went 0-for-3 with two groundouts and a strikeout before being lifted prior to the start of the eighth inning. Jeter had a busy night in the field against the Twins’ Triple-A affiliate from Rochester, New York, seeing total seven chances. He committed one throwing error and mishandled a flip at second base, which allowed a run to score.

Jeter is now 1-for-9 with four walks and two strikeouts since joining up with Scranton/Wilkes-Barre. There is talk of him joining the Yankees on Friday, but that seems a tad optimistic at present.

If Jeter performs better on Thursday — especially in the field — maybe he can better force the issue.

Andy McCullough of the Newark Star-Ledger passes along this note:

  1. Walk - Jul 10, 2013 at 10:53 PM

    I hear a rusty jeter gets you two gift baskets.

  2. turdfurgerson68 - Jul 10, 2013 at 10:54 PM

    Derek Jeter ‘struggling defensively’?

    Why is that news??? He’s ALWAYS ‘struggling defensively’!

    • bigmeechy74 - Jul 11, 2013 at 1:32 AM

      And… it doesn’t matter. Is there anything more overblown than defense in baseball? I remember before last season everyone was freaking out about how bad the tigers infield defense would be because of miggy at 3rd and prince at 1st. And it meant…. absolutely nothing…

      • dan1111 - Jul 11, 2013 at 2:01 AM

        The Tigers won only 88 games last year despite having a strong lineup led by two hitters with MVP-caliber seasons and very good starting pitching. Am I the only one who is underwhelmed by that?

        Their defense was among the worst in the league and cost them 5 wins compared to an average defense according to WAR.

      • baseballisboring - Jul 11, 2013 at 2:01 AM

        Um…defense is pretty important…especially at shortstop…

      • bigmeechy74 - Jul 11, 2013 at 11:25 AM

        Pretty important. About 10% of what goes in to being a successful team. Some championship teams win because of their pitching. Some win because of their potent lineup. Has there ever been a team that won the world series because they had the best team defense? No. And look at my above comment about balls in play and see if you think I have a point at all. Or if I am just a rambling lunatic.

      • baseballisboring - Jul 11, 2013 at 2:08 AM

        Dan1111: Nope, you’re not the only one…88 wins is very underwhelming considering they had Verlander, Fister, Scherzer, Anibal Sanchez (for the 2nd half), Miggy, Fielder, Austin Jackson…and considering they’re in the freaking AL Central, where they got to play the Twins, White Sox, Royals and Indians 19 times each. Would they have even made the playoffs if they were in the east or west?

      • Walk - Jul 11, 2013 at 3:17 AM

        Short, catcher, second and centerfield are premier defensive positions. A good defensive player can play those positions and be a light hitter and have nearly as much to contribute as a slugger at any other position. Being strong up the middle goes a long way to support a teams pitchers as well.

      • bigmeechy74 - Jul 11, 2013 at 11:19 AM

        I understand the concept. But do you remember a few years ago when the Mariners supposedly found a “market inefficiency” and loaded up on defense? They were one of the worst teams in the league. Here is the breakdown of importance for a team to win. 50% hitting, 40% pitching, 10% defense. Dave Cameron of fangraphs said that. Not just me. And it makes sense. Think about it. Every major league baseball player can make routine plays in the field. 90% of balls in play are either clean hits or routine balls. So most of the time the play is going to get made anyway. Think about how often you actually need to have a gold glove guy as opposed to how often you need to get a hit or for a pitcher to get someone out.

      • Walk - Jul 11, 2013 at 4:33 PM

        You still need hitters. It has been a while but if I remember correctly short has the most chances for an out per game, 6 if I remember the article I read correctly. All of the middle positions have extra value attached for one reason or another, for instance second because it is part of the double play combo, catcher to call and field, and a center fielder who can play the gaps. Those are the positions where a lighter bat can be overcome by a great fielder. If you pack a team like the mariners with light hitters, even if they are good on d, well it is still tough to win. I am not saying you pack the whole team with plus defenders, I am saying the middle of the field is where you can put plus defenders to take maximum effect of their talents. The middle is also where a sub par defender hurts you the most.

      • bigmeechy74 - Jul 11, 2013 at 6:27 PM

        I totally understand all of that. I dork out to fangraphs, rob neyer, and keith law too. I’m just of the opinion that it’s completely overblown. Like I said, I think it breaks down 50% hitting, 40% pitching, 10% fielding in terms of importance.

      • dan1111 - Jul 11, 2013 at 12:18 PM

        @bigmeechy74, sabermetric conventional wisdom used to be that defense isn’t worth much, but that has changed over time. Now most people think defense is much more valuable than that. It is just hard to measure, which is why it hasn’t been valued by stat-minded people as much. But the amount of effort that teams are now spending trying to measure defense should indicate how important they think it is.

        Your “90% of balls in play” example doesn’t show much. A .300 OBP is barely acceptable, while a .400 OBP is outstanding, yet the outcomes are the same 90% of the time.

        Clear defensive mistakes are rare, but there is a big difference in how many balls different defenders can get to, and that isn’t that obvious to a casual observer.

        Finally, the 2010 Mariners (Zduriencik’s defense-oriented team) were just a horrible team all around. Even if defense is very important, some level of hitting and pitching competence is still necessary. And they weren’t even good at defense–the entire team only compiled 1.4 defensive WAR for the season, which is about as average as can be. They really don’t show anything about the value of defense.

      • bigmeechy74 - Jul 11, 2013 at 1:44 PM

        Fair enough. But the way people talk you would think that defense is just as important as hitting. By that logic, Let’s say we were both GM’s. I will take Miggy and votto. You can have Brendan Ryan and Peter Bourjos. Since defense is so important you would be ok with that, right?

      • jwbiii - Jul 11, 2013 at 2:24 PM

        “Has there ever been a team that won the world series because they had the best team defense?”

        Interesting question. Over the past 20 years, The 2010 Giants, 2007 Red Sox, 2002 Angels, 2001 Diamondbacks, 1998 Yankees lead their leagues in defensive effieciency and won championships.

        The 2009 Yankees and 2005 White Sox were second in defensive efficiency and also won championships.

        Correlation does not imply causation, but it sure seems that turning batted balls into outs is a good thing.

      • bigmeechy74 - Jul 11, 2013 at 2:42 PM

        Defensive efficiency as in not making errors? I’m talking about range and arm etc. For example, Does anyone look at that 2009 yankee team and think “Man. That’s one hell of a defensive ballclub!” Johnny damon in his late 30′s. Arod and jeter in their mid 30′s. Nick Swisher etc. Does that really seem like a great defensive team? Like I said earlier, if defense really meant as much as offense, then Peter Bourjos and Brendan Ryan would be 2 of the highest paid players and just as coveted by GM’s as Joey Votto.

      • jwbiii - Jul 11, 2013 at 6:39 PM

        Defensive efficiency has little to do with errors. It’s about turning balls in play into outs. The obverse of BABIP. Outfield assists also count. Of the 19 champions over the past 20 years, 8 have had below average offenses (measured by OPS+), 2 have had below average pitching (measured by ERA+), and 1 has had a below average defense (measured by team defense efficiency rating divided by league defensive efficiency rating and put a 100 point scale). If your team doesn’t field well, you’re making golf course reservations in October rather than hotel reservations for your family to watch you play in playoff games.

      • bigmeechy74 - Jul 11, 2013 at 11:50 PM

        It seems like you are trying to say that defense efficiency is more important than offense. It isn’t.Hypothetically if we could have the exact same pitching i will take my team of average defenders and good hitters against your team of average hitters and good defenders and I will win more times than not. I would be willing to bet. But obviously we aren’t going to be able to try this in real life

    • stoutfiles - Jul 11, 2013 at 6:40 AM

      It’s okay, he’ll eventually make “the play” that everyone falls for. You know, the one where he barely gets to a ball that anyone else would have easily gotten to, then jump to throw of it instead of stopping for an accurate throw. He does this ALL THE TIME.

  3. timb12 - Jul 10, 2013 at 11:07 PM

    That wasn’t Jeter…

    That was Derek Eater.

  4. nothanksimdriving123 - Jul 10, 2013 at 11:07 PM

    I’ve heard of this Jeter kid. Didn’t his dad play for the Yankees back in the ’90s?
    Also of note: hot Rangers prospect Manny Ramirez went 0-2 with a walk as his Round Rockers were 2-hit, 7-0 by OK City. I’m telling you, that kid is going places.

  5. betarooster - Jul 10, 2013 at 11:36 PM

    Jeter “… struggled defensively at shortstop…”?

    How could they tell?

  6. Jorge Lancerio - Jul 10, 2013 at 11:59 PM

    Old and coming off of major injury. I wouldn’t bet on him being an all-star from here on out, but I also wouldn’t freak out over him going 0-3 in a rehab start.

  7. moogro - Jul 11, 2013 at 12:24 AM

    Rusty Jeeter is a cool name.

  8. coryfor3 - Jul 11, 2013 at 12:41 AM

    He struggles defensively in the majors too.

  9. bigmeechy74 - Jul 11, 2013 at 1:28 AM

    Who cares? Even if he comes to the yankees and sucks it won’t matter AT ALL. They have terrible players already. And they are good for no reason. The yankees are the only team that can roll out a lineup with zoilo almonte, overbay, jayson nix, david adams, austin romine, hafner etc and still WIN FOR NO REASON!!! I HATE THEM! So if Jeter sucks or if he is great it means NOTHING. Because they will ALWAYS WIN regardless of how crappy their players are. Apparently it means nothing to develop young talent and have good players. The yankees have proven that the “get a bunch of washed up guys that should be in the minors and watch the w’s pile up” strategy is the way to go!

    • dan1111 - Jul 11, 2013 at 2:09 AM

      Are you talking about the same team that is currently in fourth place in the AL East?

      This is not much of a mystery, really: they have terrible hitting (among the worst in baseball), pretty good starting pitching, and a strong bullpen. As a result, they have a mediocre record. They have about 4 more wins than their pythagorean record says they should have, but that is hardly an unusual amount of luck.

    • baseballisboring - Jul 11, 2013 at 4:51 AM

      Hey man…have a glass of water. It’s just sports.

  10. aceshigh11 - Jul 11, 2013 at 1:44 AM

    I hardly think this is cause for concern. He’s 39 years old fer Chrissake…give the guy a chance to get back in the groove.

    • paperlions - Jul 11, 2013 at 7:53 AM

      I’ve been trying to get back in the groove since I was 38. No luck so far.

  11. dan1111 - Jul 11, 2013 at 4:48 AM

    He botched the plays on purpose to teach a valuable lesson to the young ballplayers on the team. Word has it that several of them were inspired enough that they will now go on to have hall of fame careers.

  12. jeniferjimm - Jul 11, 2013 at 5:58 AM

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  13. proudlycanadian - Jul 11, 2013 at 6:43 AM

    Despite his age and rust, Jeter would still be an upgrade for the Yankees compared to the players they have used at shortstop.

    • paperlions - Jul 11, 2013 at 7:55 AM

      His offense may be an upgrade, but nearly all of that will be lost due to the defensive downgrade.

    • dcarroll73 - Jul 11, 2013 at 8:17 AM

      You’re right on the button there, proudly. As for the defense, a quote from Mike Fitzpatrick’s AP Recap on last night’s Yankees game captures how The Captain improves team chemistry:
      “Cano also had some fun with double-play partner Eduardo Nunez on a second-inning popup that was caught by the shortstop on Cano’s side of second base. Cano casually folded his arms in mock disbelief as the ball descended and then shot Nunez a nasty look before cracking a smile.”
      Cano knew that The Captain would never have poached on his territory that way. I will happily take Jeter’s lack of range in exchange for his bat even if it is rusty.

  14. vincentbojackson - Jul 11, 2013 at 7:00 AM

    On a positive note, Jeter went hitless in Triple A game. A-Rod’s still going hitless in A ball.

    A lot of money foolishly tied up in two aging veterans.

  15. Jonny 5 - Jul 11, 2013 at 8:16 AM

    You mean he didn’t just leave the balls go to the LF and watch them bounce by him as he flashes his smile thinking of his sparkling fld% and GG nomination? Holy moley !

  16. deathmonkey41 - Jul 11, 2013 at 1:44 PM

    “Jeter is now 1-for-9 with four walks and two strikeouts since joining up with Scranton/Wilkes-Barre.”

    And he still got laid 17 times. Damn, I love and hate that guy.

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