Jeter stands by ‘flip play’; Tito weighs in

It had to be an amusing scene at Yankees’ camp today, what with Terry Francona roaming the clubhouse as a broadcaster and Derek Jeter being asked to defend perhaps the defining play of his career, which happened, oh, 11 years ago.

This came on the heels of Bobby Valentine saying on Tuesday that he thinks that Jeter was out of position on that flip play, and that the Red Sox would never practice that alignment in their cutoff drills. The moment in question happened on Oct. 13, 2001, Game 3 of the Division Series between the Yankees and A’s. Terrence Long lined a double into the corner, and Shane Spencer missed two cutoff men. But there was Jeter on the first-base side of the mound, in position to flip the ball home to Jorge Posda to get Jeremy Giambi, who didn’t bother to slide.

Valentine did tell me this morning he wasn’t trying to malign Jeter because he said, “I love Jeter”.

Anyway, here is what Jeter had to say from Yankees camp. Thanks to colleague Adam Berry for passing these quotes on.

On Bobby V. disputing the notion that the Yankees actually practiced that play. “I mean, we do. You know what I mean? You’ve seen it. You guys have been here.”

What does he think about this being a topic of conversation? “I don’t think anything. I really don’t. I have no thoughts whatsoever. Who cares? Why are we talking about this? They must be bored over there, huh? I don’t understand.”

Valentine’s motivation? “I don’t know Bobby well enough to tell you what he’s trying to do. I could care less, I guess is the best way to put it. I just don’t know why it’s brought up.”

“Think about it. We don’t practice it? We do. You guys see it. What else can I say. I was out of position? I was where I was supposed to be.”

Terry Francona’s view of the flip play?” I’m sure some of [what Valentine said] is in jest,” Francona said. I don’t know. I wasn’t there, and I’m out of it. I’m out of it. To me, it’s not important whether the Yankees practice that play or not. The fact of the matter is that he’s good enough to make that play. You could practice that play until you’re blue in the face, and he’s probably still the only guy who makes that play. That play was part of baseball lore. Again, I don’t doubt they do practice it. He’s probably the only guy that makes the play. He sees the field better than anybody in baseball. He’s the one guy that makes that play.”

Jeter was much happier to talk about his fellow captain for all these years, Jason Varitek, who will formally retire on Thursday.

“Talking about Varitek, I’ll point out the good things — an unbelievable career. I’m happy for him. I enjoyed competing against him all these years. That’s what we should be talking about as opposed to what Bobby said.”

Valentine praised Varitek in a blanket statement yesterday adding that he “beat up Alex”.

A-Rod didn’t feel like touching it.

“Like I said, I’m not going to win many battles here when it comes to words, especially against Bobby. But I will tell you this, I got my new press secretary that should be landing in the next couple days, Reggie Jackson, so I’ll let him handle that. All right? Thanks.”

More from Jeter: Rivalry still strong? “It’s the same. I don’t know. I can’t tell you that he’s trying to stir it up. I don’t know why you would have to stir it up. I think our rivalry gets so much attention anyway. But I am not saying that he is stirring it up.”

What will Jeter say to Bobby V. when he sees him?

“Hey, Bobby. That’s about it. I don’t think it’s that big of a deal, really. A lot of people have said that I wasn’t supposed to be here, and I’ve told you guys from Day 1 that’s where I’m supposed to be. That’s what we work on. He’s not the first person to say that. Since I’ve come up, we’ve done it the same way. We might be doing something like that the next couple days, so I invite all you guys to come out there and see that I’m in the same spot every time.”

How about seeing Tito in the Yankees clubhouse? “Yeah, I’ve always respected Terry. I’ve enjoyed playing against him, getting to know him throughout the years. I have a lot of respect for him and how he manages. Every player that I’ve ever talked to about him appreciated the way he managed and the way he dealt with players. I always had a lot of respect for him. Yeah, it is [strange having him in the clubhouse]. But it’s good to see him. He did a great job. It goes without saying how great he did in Boston. I’m happy to see him.”


Still the Cry-Sox, as usual and always.Poor Losers will always be losers.

No reply will be necessary from Derek or anyone else for that matter, because Bobby “v” is the skipper of a once again CURSED ship! The Bambino was stirred just about a year ago now by all the pre-season declarations that the 2011 Bosox would be better than Babe’s 1927 Yanks and we all know how that turned out! I would say, judging from the Sox monumental September crash last year, that the Babe is back and he is pissed! MAKE NO MISTAKE ABOUT IT: His shadow will LOOM LARGE again over Beantown for a long time!

Lets see. Bobby Valentine was an asshole with the mutts and should have stayed in Japan. Then he lasted about 10 minutes

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Hmmmmmmmm…….let me see. Bobby Valentine was an asshole with the NY mutts, was fired and went to Japan. Sadly he came back and spent 10 minutes on ESPN before getting dumped. Now, as usual, he is running his mouth as the Red Sox manager (bet he doesn`t last the season) and running down a player whose dirty jock he is not qualified to look at, let alone carry.

Pure Class that is all I can say about Jeter…
Life Time Boston Red Sox fan

The flip play was a great play by Derek Jeter, but Jeremy Giambi (the DH before Ortiz back in 2003–hard to believe) didn’t slide. If Giambi actually wanted to get his pants dirty he would have been safe. Maybe it was the guy on deck (not sure who that was) that didn’t yell “get down.” Oh by the way, Randy Johnson and Curt Schilling put an end to the Yankees dynasty a few weeks later in the desert in Arizona.

It was another “choke” job by Billy Beane’s A’s. Up 2-0 and lost three straight. Beane wrote the book on how not win a playoff series. Maybe they should make a movie about this guy!

Got to feel sorry for the Red Sox franchise as they went from a class act in Francona to a clown. Why is this guy even talking about plays from over 10 years ago? What’s next Bobby? Going to dispute Ruth’s called homer?

I think Jeter is one of the smartest guys in baseball and only he could make that play.

Bobby Valentine, I really respected you for a very, very long time. Even when you became the Red Sox manager this off season, I had nothing but good things to say about you. But come on man. You haven’t won a single game in a Red Sox uniform, let alone a MEANINGFUL game yet you are still running your mouth like you have been there your entire career and have actually done something people care about? To come out and say that “Jeter was out of position” in the 2001 ALCS game vs the A’s on the cut off play, where does that even come from?? Win a meaningful game in a Red Sox uniform and then say something, better yet figure out who is going to play short stop and be the next irrelevant captain of your team, before you call out one of the greatest team captains in the history of the sport. I mean I’m sure your pitchers are getting worried as to who is going to be the next one to provide the beer and Popeye’s this year since your captain is gone. Get some class and worry about the 10,000 issues the Red Sox have, not the way in which the Yankees win games. The difference between the Yankees and the Red Sox is that the Yankees would never just randomly come out and make comments on a Red Sox player/coach. It’s called class. And, obviously you would “never practice that play”, you’re all too busy playing beer pong in the club house.

Jeter was def in line. I’ve seen them practice it before myself. Bobby is just stirring stuff up or tryna show his place maybe as new manager. Who knows. Both Jeter and Bobby are great people and player/coach. It will be a great season and one for the ages I’m sure. Can’t wait! #MLB2012 @BarkersBaseball

Valentine’scomment must have been an attempt to add fireto the rivalry,and pro-bably nothing more. I saw the play Jeter made and it was truly spectacular.He reacted instinctively and did not have time to consider whether the baserunner streaking to the plate would have been out had he not made the play.


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Bobby V is demonstrating exactly why I did not think he would be a good hire for the Red Sox. Bobby V, from a Red Sox fan– PUT A SOCK IN IT! (It’s welcome to be a red one, but…) Stay out of the way of the microphone. SIGH!
For what it’s worth, I thought Jeter’s play was a great one. So was the catch where he landed in the stands and bloodied his nose. Jeter plays the game the right way, and he deserves every accolade he gets.
If we’re gonna mix it up, do it on the field, not with a microphone.

Hello Greg,

I remember that play with Jeter when he went into the stands and came away with a bloodied nose. Ironically it was against the Red Sox and that was one of their toughest losses that year. In the other dugout, Nomar sat there and never played in that game and that was a game that went into extra innings. Towards the end of that month (July) Nomar was dealt to Chicago and as they say “the rest is history.”

I also thought the flip play was an incredible play by Jeter. One of many he has made in his great career! Jeter is not going to bite on Valentine’s comments. Perhaps the prima donna that plays third base for the Yankees will take the bait when Valentine mentions something about him. I’m guessing that is a matter of time. Either during spring training or during the regular season.

Valentines a complete MOROON…

Why the Red Sox are not practicing that play is the reason we are a second fiddle to the Yankees. Bobby opens his mouth and out comes BS. Never one anything and most likely never will. We are going down hill and will keep going that way until we have class. We should take some lessons from a class act. The Yankees.

Jeter said it best: “They must be bored over there, huh?”

I realize we’re still a month away from the season and you need to fill up your blog with something, but this is lame stuff indeed.

Bobby V, I love ya, but you have to know when to muzzle yourself, this was a no no, why make comments like this, it is counter productive to your over all aim, I thought over the years you would grow emotionally, this is a sign you haven’t, I hope you can stifle yourself when situations like this arise, I still am in your corner, but you’ve got to show a little class and maturity, incidents like this will hurt you over the long haul, please think before speaking.

Hello Doug,

How would this hurt Valentine?

Incredible play by Derek Jeter and if he wasn’t there, Giambi (hard to believe he was the DH before Ortiz back in the early weeks of the 2003 season) would have been safe. I’ve watched the video and the on deck hitter is pointing to the ground. I’m guessing Giambi didn’t want to get his pants dirty. A few later Schilling and Johnson ended the Yankees dynasty in Phoenix.

It was also another choke job by Billy Beane’s A’s. They were up 2-0 and blew the series. Maybe they should make a movie of this overrated GM Billy Beane!

I guess I’m one of the few on here that doesn’t care if Bobby V. opens up his mouth or not. This Red Sox team has been stale for quite some time now and it is refreshing to hear some energy coming out of the managers mouth. I liked Francona, but he didn’t say much and he might have been the definition of the word “boring.” Valentine is the total opposite of the manager before him.

Hello, Brian! Are you the same FLA Brian who had been a “regular” on this board before? Perhaps we’ll see ya around again?😉 Take care!

When I saw him in ESPN I used to thank the good Lord this fool wasn’t our manager. I did NOT want this clown in Beantown. Great, so far he is proving me right. He is only going to put more attention on us now that dumb sack of shit

Billy Beane and Moneyball resulted this year in ManRam/ Zazu. Go figure…

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