We are on the eve of pitchers and catchers reporting, so I think it’s time to take a look at some of the lighter stories facing the Yankees. Both stories include two memorable Yankees from the past 20 years, with one showing the ridiculousness of autographs and the other showing he has to prove why he is the best at what he does, all over again.
According to the New York Times’ Scott Cacciola story, getting an autograph from Derek Jeter during Spring Training can be a very stressful ordeal. Apparently, he is helped by John Johnson, a Yankees employee, who has the demeanor of a drill sergeant. Johnson tells the autograph-seekers that in order for Jeter to sign as many autographs as possible, he doesn’t need to hear about your life story. In fact, Johnson can be heard regularly saying this:
“Single file! No chitchat! He doesn’t want to hear about your personal life, so don’t ask him about his!”
Apparently, he is also no fan of budging in line either.
“If anyone from the back moves forward, we’re going to cut the session off!”
Sadly, Jeter doesn’t stop to sign autographs very often while in Tampa. However, the autograph-seekers are usually grown men, many of which will just turn the autograph into a quick buck. It’s borderline sad that these types of people have ruined the autographing experience for younger generations all in the name of greed.
Meanwhile, Jeter isn’t an introvert, when Spring Training officially begins he talks to fans while stretching and while in the on-deck circle, but that is while inside the Yankees complex, where fans are allowed in.
Speaking of Spring Training, Mariano Rivera is taking this part of the baseball schedule serious for the first time in a while. Normally, Mo won’t attend pitchers and catchers when they first report, but instead gets himself ready and shows up when everybody comes together. Not this year. In fact, Mo said to Dan Barbarisi of the Wall Street Journal that he’ll report to pitchers and catchers on time with his other cohorts.
“This time, I’m going to show up at the right time … The arm, is good, the arm is good. I’m feeling great, and I’m getting anxious now. It’s getting close, and I’m getting anxious.”
The 43-year-old tore his knee up shagging flyballs during pregame in early May 2012 in Kansas City. He would miss the remainder of the year, which put serious doubt in whether he’d ever don the pinstripes again. Luckily, Rivera will be the Yankees closer for one more year as the Yankees will have this year to figure out who will compete for the closer’s role in 2014.
- Should more prominent athletes have designated times and spots to sign autographs or is that something they graduate from?
- Your thoughts on Mo returning to the Yankees: Will he have a good or bad final year?