April 25, 2011


How Jeter put A-Rod in the Yankees' 'snubhouse' (SUSANNAH CAHALAN, April 24, 2011, NY Post)

Jeter's unyielding insistence on loyalty and his dislike for A-Rod during the third baseman's early years in pinstripes was so legendary that one Yankee official admitted he was too scared to talk to Jeter about making amends with his teammate.

"It would've been the last conversation I ever had with Derek," the official said. "I would've been dead to him. It would've been like approaching Joe DiMaggio to talk to him about Marilyn Monroe."

Don Mattingly, then the hitting coach and former captain, tried to intervene, citing his own unfriendly history with teammate Wade Boggs. "I faked it with Boggs," he told Jeter. "And you have to fake it with Alex." [...]

[W]hen fans and rival players criticized A-Rod, Jeter deferred instead of defending his teammate.

General Manager Brian Cashman noticed this and asked Jeter to "fake it" with A-Rod.

"You've got to lead them all, the ones you like and the ones you don't," he told him. He asked him to appeal to Yankees fans on A-Rod's behalf.

"I can't tell the fans what to do," Jeter countered.

A-Rod's obsession with Jeter continued, the book says. He constantly asked players and team officials about Jeter -- down to which charity he was currently supporting.

It all came to a head during a Yankees loss in August 2006 to Baltimore.

An easy pop-up hung in the air between A-Rod and Jeter. Both players closed in and Jeter bumped into A-Rod, knocking the ball out of his glove. Jeter shot A-Rod a withering look.

The gesture did not go unnoticed. Cashman pulled Jeter aside and ordered him to knock it off.

"Listen, this has to stop," Cashman said. "Everybody in the press box, every team official, everyone watching, they saw you look at the ball on the ground and look at him with disgust like you were saying, 'That's your mess, you clean it up.' "

A-Rod also felt betrayed by manager Joe Torre, who players said added fuel to the fiery feud.

"He would never call Jeter on anything, but he'd have no problem doing it to Alex," one player told the author.

...but Joe Torre's book made it clear that anyone who wasn't there when they won the first couple rings wasn't to be considered a real Yankee.

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Posted by at April 25, 2011 1:57 PM

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