There's no getting around the fact that Derek Jeter had a bad year by his standards in 2010, or that his .300 OBP and .235 SLG heading into Wednesday's game are anything but atrocious, or that he'll be 37 this year. None of these are good things.
On the other hand, the 2011 season isn't even two weeks old, and just like we're not rushing to annoint Miguel Montero as the greatest hitter who's ever lived (even though he is hitting .455 right now), it's probably too soon to declare that Jeter's days as an effective ballplayer are over or likely soon to be.
It's true that through 9 games in 2011, Jeter has yet to reach base three times in any single one of them, and is hitting just .206/.300/.235. However, using Baseball-Reference.com's wonderful Play Index, I wanted to find out how rare or unusual this type of slump was throughout The Captain's career.
It turns out that The Captain has had a similar streak in every single season of his career, in fact his average is nearly three such streaks per season.
The only thing that really separates the current slump the rest is that it began on Opening Day, forcing him to live with a .206 seasonal batting average for at least a little while. And he had a bad year in 2010. And he's 37.
Only time will tell how many more good seasons Jeter has left, but it seems awfully premature to suggest the end is near.