"For the first 4 months of the season Derek was one of our most consistent hitters, and I consider us in playoff mode right now because we need to win games," Girardi said. "Throughout his career he's been clutch in the playoffs, and we're leaving him there. He's been a money player his whole career, and we need him to be this last month, but there are other issues with our lineup we need to be better at, too."
While the argument can be made that Jeter should be moved down with his .261 average and OBP that has fallen close to .300, Girardi is right when he says Jeter is far from the biggest problem this team has offensively.
The Yanks have gotten next to nothing production from the heart of their order this season, thus run production has been scarce. Girardi made sure to mention how poorly his team is hitting top to bottom in 2014:
"When you have to look up and down the lineup and there's a lot of .230s and .240s, I'm not sure why Derek is the one being picked on," Girardi said. "He had a tough (August), but four or five of our hitters did, too."
When you compare Jeter's average to others on the team, he isn't doing as bad as people make it out to be. The spotlight is on Jeter because he is in such an important spot in the lineup and the feeling is he isn't setting the table enough.
While that may be true, moving him down at this point may be futile. The top two or three hitters can get on base every time, the Yankees still may not be able to drive them in with guys like Mark Teixeira, Carlos Beltran and Brian McCann sputtering at the plate.
It looks as though Jeter will finish his career in the No. 2 hole, so Yankees fans might as well stop complaining and start enjoying the final games of The Captain's career, because once he's gone there will never be another like him again.
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