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Happy 40th Birthday, Derek Jeter!

Jun 26, 2014, 8:23 AM EDT

source: AP

Today is Derek Jeter‘s 40th birthday. I have not done a ton of research into the matter, but based on the columns and tributes I’ve seen coming out of New York, I’m pretty sure it’s safe to say that Jeter is the first Major League Baseball player in history to turn 40-years-old. That’s a pretty great accomplishment and we should all talk about how classy and winning a strategy turning 40-years-old really is.

But while no baseball player has ever turned 40 before — again, Jeter is simply incomparable — normal people can turn 40 sometimes. Take me, for instance. I’m 40-years-old. And I feel like that’s not the only thing Jeter and I have in common. I mean, we are both single. We both have less hair than we did in the 90s. Neither of us can move to our left that easily. We both have jobs that 40-year-olds don’t usually have and, being honest, if there were younger cheaper people capable of doing what we do better than us just hanging around, we’d probably be sitting on the bench. We’re just lucky to have found ourselves in the right situation at this point in our lives.

But I kid, Derek. He knows I kid. To the extent he cares — and I seriously, seriously doubt he cares one iota — he knows that people like me who like to make jokes about The Captain are really reacting to the Jeter Industrial Complex which has venerated him to the extreme, not to The Captain himself. That, when we stop trying to be snarky and actually allow ourselves a genuine bit of reflection, we know that we have been really damn lucky to see Jeter play these past 20 years. That while one can assign value to him statistically, make judgments about him objectively or simply count the number of championship rings he has won, the more subjective stuff about him — his consistency, his durability, his star power and his dignity in a world where dignity is often hard to find — is something that even people who would love to see the Yankees lose more often than they win can and do appreciate. There are only a handful of careers like Jeter’s in all of baseball history, and people around our age have gotten to see the entire thing, from start to finish.

So happy birthday, my fellow follically-challenged carbon-based life form who no longer sees Minka Kelly (you by choice, me by restraining order). Here’s hoping it’s a good one, in which no loud teenagers congregate around you lawn and in which no one asks you why you make so many weird noises when you sit down or stand up.

  1. jimmyt - Jun 26, 2014 at 8:48 AM

    How does your “partner” feel about you refering to yourself as single?

    • Craig Calcaterra - Jun 26, 2014 at 9:09 AM

      Well, I meant “unmarried.”

      • historiophiliac - Jun 26, 2014 at 10:39 AM

        Should’ve gone with: we both have hot girlfriends.

      • tfbuckfutter - Jun 26, 2014 at 11:21 AM

        Ooohh….

        Tell us about your hot girlfriend, histo.

      • historiophiliac - Jun 26, 2014 at 11:28 AM

        She’s your wife, bf.

      • tfbuckfutter - Jun 26, 2014 at 11:33 AM

        You’ve done well for yourself then.

      • historiophiliac - Jun 26, 2014 at 11:35 AM

        That’s what she said.

      • SocraticGadfly - Jun 26, 2014 at 11:40 AM

        On the non buckfuttter side of snark
        @Craig: So, is any city still left on Jeter’s farewell tour going to gift him with … a glove?

        On the buckfutter side of snark
        @Hist … just make sure his wife doesn’t have his aunt’s balls.

      • SocraticGadfly - Jun 26, 2014 at 5:20 PM

        I was kind of disappointed the Cards didn’t give him an Ozzie Smith model mitt … with an instructional manual, of course.

  2. metalhead65 - Jun 26, 2014 at 9:04 AM

    I find it amazing you have no problem being snarky and picking on someone like Jeter, who has never been anything but classy because of that fact and that the general public admires him for that. but at the same time you have no problem heaping praise and worshiping the look at me bat flipping attention seeking players in the game. you also seem to take great pride in standing up for the cheaters and ped users like it’s no big deal that you know cheated to gain the records and glory they attained.

    • Craig Calcaterra - Jun 26, 2014 at 9:10 AM

      You’re right, I do have thing for pathetic loser-types. I mean, I haven’t banned you after all of this time.

      • metalhead65 - Jun 26, 2014 at 9:22 AM

        hit a nerve did I? since you are the owner you can say anything you want including insult and get personal with responses you don’t like? kind of goes against the whole tolerance thing you preach doesn’t it?

      • Craig Calcaterra - Jun 26, 2014 at 9:35 AM

        Hahaha, you’ve never once made a comment that wasn’t a snippy, annoyed and insecure mini-rant, and you’re the one who “hit a nerve.” OK, dude.

      • SocraticGadfly - Jun 26, 2014 at 11:42 AM

        Actually, Craig likes suck-up types more. He still touts Posnanski, who’s never really apologized for his suck-up JoePa bio, right?

      • sportsfan18 - Jun 26, 2014 at 3:56 PM

        Mr. Posnanski SHOULD be touted…

        and to the rest of you, Craig gets on here and responds from time to time, which is great.

        I know they all are busy and have many articles, but the interaction with the author of the article occasionally is nice.

        not many others get on and respond… and if/when they do, it’s rare…

      • nbjays - Jun 26, 2014 at 4:46 PM

        We get the occasional reply from Bill.

      • SocraticGadfly - Jun 26, 2014 at 5:22 PM

        @SportsFan … ignoring Posnanski’s debacle on the Paterno bio, I would say he’s very good on baseball and pretty good on college football. Otherwise? He’s in the generalist category in my book.

    • greymares - Jun 26, 2014 at 9:15 AM

      I can’t believe i thumbed down somebody ripping Craig. There’s a first time for everything. lol.

      • DelawarePhilliesFan - Jun 26, 2014 at 4:52 PM

        I feel your pain…..

        Nah, we all CC is da’ man. So it is right to thumbs down someone who takes him too seriously….especially for a not that snarky post

    • aresachaela - Jun 26, 2014 at 9:33 AM

      *Landmine

    • Kevin S. - Jun 26, 2014 at 9:56 AM

      I’m amazed you completely missed the part where Craig made it clear the snark was not for Jeter but those who deify him. Wait, no I’m not – you’re an reactionary troglodyte and this is what you do.

      • [citation needed] fka COPO - Jun 26, 2014 at 10:02 AM

        I’m shocked he actually responded to Craig’s initial retort. Guess he does know how to hit the reply button…

    • tfbuckfutter - Jun 26, 2014 at 11:19 AM

      I don’t know…..unrepentantly spreading herpes to every actress and model in her early 20s isn’t the classiest move I ever heard of.

      • bobwsc - Jun 26, 2014 at 12:01 PM

        including Valtrex in the “thanks for coming” goodie bag is straight up class though

      • Francisco (FC) - Jun 26, 2014 at 12:04 PM

        Ah, ah, ah, not a goodie bag, Gift Basket.

    • cur68 - Jun 26, 2014 at 1:39 PM

      So, without Dusty Baker to kick around anymore, lets turn our attention to our other favourite bugbear, right metalhead? AHEM!
      DANG YOU Craig Calcaterra! Dang you to HECK!!!!

    • tved12 - Jun 26, 2014 at 4:43 PM

      I agree with you metalhead. Craig is just a contrarian, he really likes going against the grain.

      I catch myself doing that at time, a perfect example is LeBron James. I’ve always liked him, but with everybody piling on I just have empathy for the guy. It’s not like he cheated or did anything wrong, but all these people suddenly hate him.

      I feel the same about Puig. I’m not a big fan of his style, but I don’t understand why people hate him so much (unless their in that division).

      That said, you know any time Craig can write an article that’s against the grain he’s all over it. And the readers here at HBT seem to share the same type of views. Then again, you could debate that all of us on ProSportsTalk are a little contrarion. We’ve all gone against the giant, being ESPN.

  3. therealdave123 - Jun 26, 2014 at 9:06 AM

    Ah yes the prodigal son turns 40. May he and his .267 BA live on forever. Wait, I forgot we are NEVER allowed to criticize the chosen one. My apologies.

    • protectthishouse54 - Jun 26, 2014 at 10:06 AM

      Comments like this seem more prevalent than the ones that “deify” him. I guess that pendulum will continue to swing…

    • miguelcairo - Jun 26, 2014 at 12:42 PM

      He’s a .311 career hitter.

      • SocraticGadfly - Jun 26, 2014 at 2:40 PM

        And, Albert Pujols is a career .318 with .594 SLG. Your point is?

    • pete2112 - Jun 26, 2014 at 3:52 PM

      therealdave123,

      It’s great to see you have all of your facts straight before posting. 267 BA?? Are you serious? You do realize Jeter is 8th all time on the hits list, right?

      • SocraticGadfly - Jun 26, 2014 at 5:24 PM

        Craig Biggio had 3,060 hits and batted .251 his final season. Your point is?

    • SocraticGadfly - Jun 26, 2014 at 5:26 PM

      At least Jeter’s back above the Kozma Line. For now. Earlier, he wasn’t: http://socraticgadfly.blogspot.com/2014/05/jeter-falls-below-kozma-line.html

    • SocraticGadfly - Jun 26, 2014 at 5:28 PM

      Ozzie Smith had a higher BA at age 41. And, lifetime, he’s well ahead of The Cap’n in WAR. Just sayin. http://socraticgadfly.blogspot.com/2013/07/is-ozzie-smith-better-ss-than-derek.html

  4. happytwinsfan - Jun 26, 2014 at 9:20 AM

    He should enjoy his birthday next year even more, when he turns 39.

    • sportsfan18 - Jun 26, 2014 at 3:58 PM

      that’s for females..

      wait, not right either as they don’t progress beyond 29…

      One gal told me she was celebrating her 29th birthday for the 4th time when she turned 32…

      • happytwinsfan - Jun 26, 2014 at 4:03 PM

        It worked for Jack Benny and it’s working for me.

  5. proudlycanadian - Jun 26, 2014 at 9:21 AM

    As I wrote on a different thread, I hope that Jeter celebrates today with a bang. May he also get to sign lot of balls with smiley faces.

    • bobwsc - Jun 26, 2014 at 12:02 PM

      thanks for making sure you included that here too

  6. go4two - Jun 26, 2014 at 9:46 AM

    YBS

  7. mybrunoblog - Jun 26, 2014 at 9:50 AM

    Is Jeter going to be writing a long narcissistic self serving blog post about turning 40 like some Hardball talk writer?

    • historiophiliac - Jun 26, 2014 at 10:43 AM

      If he did, Yankees fans would gush about how deep the Captain is and what an example he continues to set into his 4th decade…

      • asimonetti88 - Jun 26, 2014 at 10:51 AM

        Technically his 5th decade.

      • historiophiliac - Jun 26, 2014 at 11:23 AM

        Don’t rush him.

      • SocraticGadfly - Jun 26, 2014 at 9:28 PM

        How about a farewell bat flip?

    • DelawarePhilliesFan - Jun 26, 2014 at 4:56 PM

      But….writing self-serving blog is his job. So he should do that on his b-day. Just like Jeter is playing ball on his.

  8. jaylaw01 - Jun 26, 2014 at 9:50 AM

    Craig, LOVE that you respond to the snarky comments. Keep it up.

    Now if Florio would just do the same at PFT this could be fun.

    • stevietimmy - Jun 26, 2014 at 11:00 AM

      Yep, it truly emphasizes his professionalism.

      • tved12 - Jun 26, 2014 at 4:32 PM

        I’ve seen Brough over at PHT do the same thing.

        I do love the interaction and the shout outs to commenters from time to time, but I saw Brough acting like the other nose-in-the-air smart asses and lost a ton of respect for him.

        As for Craig, I like some of the stuff he gets into, but I’m not a huge fan of his style. I liked his first comment to metalhead above, but I thought the second one came off as somebody who thinks he’s better than one his commenters.

        It’s almost as if the guys on ProSportsTalk don’t care if they piss off their readers. I’m not a fan of it, but I like the intimacy of the site so I’m going to stick around. I mean, it beats the hell out of the 2000+ comments on every ESPN article that you can never respond to fast enough.

  9. whatacrocker - Jun 26, 2014 at 11:05 AM

    He’s no longer the most overrated MLB player in his 30s.

  10. 4cornersfan - Jun 26, 2014 at 11:05 AM

    Rarely have I seen a more advanced case of jeter envy. I am sorry that Chipper retired and nobody noticed , I’m sorry that Babe Ruth didn’t work out for you in 1935, but don’t take it out on the Jete. What’s your mailing address? I’ll send you a gift basket. That’ll make you feel better.

  11. yankeesfanlen - Jun 26, 2014 at 11:13 AM

    Where have you gone, Joe DiMagggio a nation turns it’s lonely eyes to you
    Semper Fidelis, Beep Beep

  12. pete2112 - Jun 26, 2014 at 12:40 PM

    I love everyone kicking Jeter while he’s down. It’s not exactly news that he’s not even close to the player he once was, but not many are when they’re in their last season and have just turned forty. As a Yankees fan, I’ll admit I’ve never been the biggest Jeter fan as I feel he gets much more attention than he deserves most of the time, but you can’t deny that he’s played the game the right way and has always taken the high road, something you obviously can’t do Craig.
    The bottom line is this: Jeter came up at just the right time with a team that came together at the right time better than most teams ever will and went on an incredible run which Jeter was integral part of. You can say what you want about Jeter, but he was a huge factor on those teams and I’m sure a lot you that are taking shots at him would’ve traded your short stop for him in a heartbeat.

    Sorry… rant over. I’ll take my lumps now.

  13. musketmaniac - Jun 26, 2014 at 4:16 PM

    There is no such thing of a classy Yankee. Trash

  14. 1998yanks - Jun 26, 2014 at 9:44 PM

    The point is Derek Jeter is going into the Hall of Fame,PERIOD. All of the Yankee haters that trash on Jeter better accept it. Try and say he is overrated blah,blah,blah. Over 3000 hits, over .300 lifetime batting average, 5 rings. Tell me what shortstop you would have picked to be on YOUR team for the last 18 years? Clowns!

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