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Derek Jeter: Wrong to Skip All-Star Game?

No matter what, Derek Jeter seems to be facing some sort of criticism at all times. From his contract dilemma in December, to calls for his head on a silver platter because he's not the same player he used to be, I'd say he's had plenty of people constantly aiming at him.  After all, he is the captain of the greatest franchise in history of American sports.

I'd like to throw this one out for discussion this afternoon before the All-Star Game is officially upon us. Today, Derek Jeter is being ridiculed for deciding to skip out on the All-Star Game. If you dare, read what the Four Letter Network has said about Jeter below.

The New York Yankees' shortstop will not be attending because of "emotional and physical exhaustion" from his pursuit of 3,000 hits, according to a report.

But an anonymous major league official told the New York Daily News that baseball wanted to celebrate Jeter's accomplishment and isn't happy he's not there.

"Derek Jeter has done everything right during his whole career," the official said, according to the newspaper. "He was wrong on this one."

Baseball would have been fine with Jeter appearing on the field for player introductions, tipping his cap and then heading back to New York, the official told the newspaper.

"This could have been a celebration of his 3,000th hit," the official said. "He didn't have to play."

So let me get this straight. Derek Jeter should travel from New York to Arizona for the sole purpose of walking out onto the field and tipping his cap because he achieved 3,000 hits? And because he decided that he wished to rest up, give his calf a few extra days, and prepare himself for what really matters, he's being criticized? This might be the most ridiculous thing I've read all season. 

Initiate rant.

"He was wrong on this one". Really, "anonymous source"? It's wrong for a player to be humble and not parade himself around in Phoenix looking for extra attention he hasn't already gotten? There's a reason he's baseball's poster boy: He's as classy and unpretentious as they come.

If I remember correctly, which I do, there was an incredible amount of hoopla surrounding the New York Yankees last season with fans of other organizations complaining about the passing of George Steinbrenner and Bob Sheppard because they both happened to pass away during the All-Star festivities. Apparently they took away from some of the splendor and nostalgia of the almighty and glorious All-Star Game. While I understand that this is not an ideal comparison, the sentiment is the same.

So now the Yankees and Derek Jeter are supposed to capitalize on a milestone by searching for even further publicity at this year's event? Somehow, I seriously doubt that the rest of the clubs around baseball are going to miss Jeter's presence at the All-Star Game. There was already enough complaining, though well deserved, that Jeter was voted to start the game at shortstop solely because of his past accomplishments.

Not to mention, but from day one baseball fans from other organizations, even some Yankees fans, have been irritated and annoyed with the fact that Jeter's number of hits was repeated countless times each day. "53 more!"..."25 more!!"

Yes, Jeter reached an extraordinary amount of hits and deserves praise. But why force feed him what he doesn't want? What matters most to Jeter is winning, not individual statistics. If he doesn't want to show up to the All-Star Game, he shouldn't be viewed in a negative light. That's just simply absurd. And, as david d posted in the morning news, at least one other writer agrees with me.

Perhaps I should have taken this nonsensical report with a grain of salt, but it irked me way too much to remain silent. Either way, it seems like it's an unfair lose-lose situation for Jeter. If this crime on humanity is Jeter's worst mistake after spending nearly sixteen full seasons in the harshest climate in sports, he's done alright.