See here the familiar Air Jordan apparel; see there the commemorative sleeve patch for the final season at Yankee Stadium I—the hallowed “House That Ruth Built.” It was back in that third of Derek’s five championship seasons, 1999, when Michael Jordan hand-selected Mr. November to be the first Jordan Brand-endorsed baseball player. And it was back in 2008 when Jeter famously took the mound, teammates huddled around him, Bronx faithful hanging on his every word, to say goodbye to Baseball’s Cathedral:
“For all of us up here, it’s a huge honor to put this uniform on every day and come out here and play. And every member of this organization, past and present, has been calling this place home for 85 years. There’s a lot of tradition, a lot of history, and a lot of memories. Now the great thing about memories is you’re able to pass it along from generation to generation. And although things are going to change next year, we’re going to move across the street, there are a few things with the New York Yankees that never change—that’s pride, that’s tradition, and most of all, we have the greatest fans in the world.”
Who could forget that moment? The team tipping their caps together. The Captain leading his men on a poignant last lap as Sinatra’s “New York, New York” echoed through those same rafters that once upon a time had witnessed Gehrig’s Luckiest Man speech.
Now, on this historic occasion of Jeter’s 2014 swan song, as each franchise in turn showers him with praise and gifts, Adam Port pays his own masterful tribute to the diamond idol of our generation.