with his current level of play; Jeter is crafting a confident statement as he continues to ascend the hierarchy of pinstripe's rank and file. Amazingly, when he's going well all the negative chatter about his age and range subsides. Comparing the first (.270/.330/.353) and second half numbers (.327/.383/.428) of the 2011 season, there is no doubt all the emotional pressure of reaching the 3,000 hit milestone had to have had an adverse effect on him. As the 3K tension receded, his batting average headed northbound in the months of July(.292), August(.387) and September (.303). And, through the first 10 games this year, he's batting .378/.404/.667 with 3 home runs. Strong production from Jeter; considering he didn't hit his first two home runs until May 8 of last year.
The longevity and excellence we are witnessing from Jeter is worthy of admiration. Especially, in an era of free agency and playing a position that is so physically demanding. From one hitman to another, Don Mattingly thinks "Jeter is the greatest who's ever played here." Having a view from atop of the hit list, his No. 2 jersey ranks fittingly ahead of other Yankees' greats: Ruth No. 3, Gehrig No. 4, DiMaggio No. 5 and Mantle No. 7.
How Derek Jeter ranks with the top five All-Time Yankees' greats (as of 4/17/12):