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Cinderella skipping his ball at All-Star Game

Derek Jeter would have been the star of the show. The belle of the ball. A
major chunk of Tuesday’s All-Star Game broadcast would have been
devoted to him and his latest accomplishment: Membership in the 3,000
hit club.

And instead, he is staying home to rest an injury. I’ve just spent the last
five minutes trying to come up with a better word than “lame” and I can’t.
Wait, I just did. It’s not only lame, it’s lazy.

Now before you accuse me of being blinded by my anti-Yankees bias
(which is stronger than ever thank you very much) you should know I have
nothing but genuine respect for Derek Jeter. How could you not for the only
pure bred Yankee to get to 3,000 hits, only the second player to hit a home
run for his 3000th career hit and the first player ever to collect hit number
3000 at Yankee Stadium (new or old).

All the assembly line clichés that get tossed around too easily apply to Jeter
in every way. He plays the game hard. He plays the game the right way.
He’s a winner. He’s clean. I tell the aspiring ballplayer in my house, work as
hard as that guy and you’ll be just fine. Jeter has always been a fine
representative of baseball.

And yet……

To skip an All-Star Game mere days after becoming one of 28 men to
achieve one of the most noteworthy accomplishments in the game doesn’t
feel right. One of the game’s most popular players, who just passed one of
true touchstone marks of the sport, opts out of what is allegedly one of
baseball’s showcase events. It makes everybody look bad.
Would it kill him to hop on a private jet, fly to Phoenix, wave, tip his cap,
maybe even get an at bat or play one inning in the field, and then fly right
home? Is that asking too much?

It’s not that I’m anti-Yankees, I’m pro-Phoenix. Once the worry was that no
one would show up due to politics. Now, upwards of 16 players have pulled
out citing injuries. I’m starting to think that baseball just wants to get this
particular All-Star Game over with. Like they’re just going through the