A little bit Jetery on both sides of the ball
Today we look at two people who recently made news in the wacky wide world of sports. Baseball, specifically.
First up, right off the bat (heh), is Christian Lopez, age 23. Profession: Customer service rep at Verizon. This is the guy who caught Derek Jeter’s 3,000th hit, which turned out to be a home run to right-center.
In the world of baseball grown men are sometimes silly about their balls. Jeter wanted to possess the special 3,000th hit baseball. The weird part? That kid Lopez gave the ball back.
Said the kid: “I know I did the right thing. It never crossed my mind to not give it back. I’m only 23. I have plenty of time to make money.”
In a post-game conference the kid said that the ball and the moment belonged to Jeter.
It is estimated that the ball has a cash value of $100,000 to $250,000.
I don’t believe in karma, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t times when good deeds pay off. The Steinbrenner family was so touched by the gesture that they rewarded Lopez with four luxury box seats for all 32 remaining regular season games this year, plus playoffs and the World Series, if the Yankees make it that far. The seats have an estimated value of $40,000.
In this world where greed and money rule above all else, Lopez did a nice thing for another human being. And that’s why it is such big news. It was such a peculiarly odd thing to do.
Stepping in from the on deck circle is Derek Jeter himself. Now 37 years old, he’s the only player in Yankee history to have 3,000 hits. And only the 28th in MLB history. The big 3k came in dramatic fashion on a home run shot to right-center field.
I don’t often speak well about grown men employed in the profession of hitting a little ball with a stick, but Jeter may very well be a special case. I think it is safe to say that a lot of women consider him to be “hunky.” He has dated women like singer Mariah Carey, a former Miss Universe, actress Jessica Biel and several other beautiful and famous women. Never married, Jeter’s current girlfriend is actress Minka Kelly, and rumors and speculation about a possible engagement abound.
Unlike other scumbag professional athletes like cheater Tiger Woods, cheater/penis photographer Brett Favre and (potentially) doper Lance Armstrong, Jeter has never been rocked by scandal and appears to be one of the few on the up and up.
The very next day after getting 3k with a home run, Jeter followed up with a dramatic 5-for-5 performance, including the game-winning hit. He may not be as spry as he once was, but he’s still one of the biggest names in baseball and consistently one of the most entertaining to watch.
I offer a modest tip of the Abyss hat to both of these men who did something exceptional on the same day. Uh, wait. I just wrote a nice post about two people. What’s wrong with me?