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Derek Jeter prepares for his exaltation

Derek Jeter prepares for his exaltation

Derek Jeter wasn’t always a patient hitter during his major league career, often swinging at the opposing pitcher’s first pitch. But for a year and a half, the former Yankees captain has been left with no choice but to be patient when it comes to his big day at Cooperstown.

More than 19 months after being elected to the National Baseball Hall of Fame almost unanimously – he received 396 of the 397 votes cast, the second highest percentage (99.7%) in history behind his former teammate, Panamanian Mariano Rivera (100%) – and more than 13 months after his exaltation ceremony was postponed due to a global pandemic – Jeter will finally have his big moment next Wednesday.

Given the long wait and the constant change in news about the pandemic, Jeter is trying very hard to save his emotions until he is standing on the podium.

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“I don’t want to give him the evil eye,” Jeter said. “It has already been postponed, so I hope it happens next week. So much happened in the world during that first year or so that I didn’t think much of it. At first it was excited and then it was canceled and the mind turns to other things. Looking forward to getting there next week, hopefully. I knock on wood. It’s already been a long time waiting ”.
Two years ago, Jeter attended Rivera’s exaltation, making the trip to Cooperstown for the first time since his childhood. That gave him a taste of what awaits him, although the perspective from the stage will be different from what he had as part of the public.
However, when it comes to Jeter, it should come as no surprise that he is not thinking much about what the day will bring him.
“As strange as it sounds, I’m trying not to think, because I just want to go and experience it for the first time,” Jeter said. “Obviously, I’m looking forward to getting there, going to the museum, meeting with all the Hall of Famers and sharing a bit with them. The ceremony and the speech are the things that I try not to give my mind to, because I want to arrive without preconceived ideas of how things are going to happen. I want to live it and try to enjoy it ”.
Ah right Speech.
Jeter’s consistency on the field and his heroic moments were what landed him in the Hall of Fame, but any list of his great moments in the majors must include his speech after the last game at the old Yankee Stadium in September 2008. No one was surprised when the face of the franchise grabbed the microphone and addressed the audience, but his words – the ones he found without the help of a written speech – were the perfect ending to that memorable night.
With less than a week to go before he is exalted, Jeter is trying to polish his speech, although he is doing it privately, as he does not want anyone to see or hear it before he gives it.
“When it comes to addressing the public, it’s something I’ve done in the past, but this will obviously be a bit longer,” Jeter said. “We are talking about a 10 or 15 minute speech. It’s difficult to cover your entire career in such a short period of time, but I’m working on that. “(MLB in Spanish)

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