The baseball playoffs have started, which means Fox Sports color commentator Tim McCarver is once again oozing love for Yankees shortstop Derek Jeter. How does McCarver keep in top Jeter-worshiping form while only calling a handful of Yankees games a year? By following Jeter around on off days and providing commentary on his life. Some excerpts from recent transcripts:
"Wow, there are a lot of guys who can get out of bed, but there aren't many who can get out of bed with the fluid grace Jeter does. Look at the footwork, and the confidence to go straight to the shower a lesser man would try to make the safe play by going to the toilet first. Just phenomenal."
"I tell you, nobody can brush away a panhandler quite like Jeter. You can talk all you want about defensive statistics and range factors and how Jeter's overrated, but I believe my eyes, not the numbers. And did you see the way he shook his head there and told the drifter he was, 'totally tapped for cash?' The way Jeter did that so convincingly when he makes $20.6 million? If anything, he's underrated."
"Jeter is making everyone on the field better. Sure, it may look like he's just watching the Twins-A's game on TV, but the players in Minneapolis can feel him watching them. They're elevating their games to match Jeter's. Frank Thomas has two homers in this game, and without Jeter watching, he'd have three strikeouts and have grounded into a double play. Anyone can be a leader for their own team; only Jeter can be a leader for teams in other time zones."
"A lot of people throw around the term 'clutch,' but the way Jeter pumped that gas was the very definition. If he goes even a cent over $20, he's stuck scrounging for change or, even worse, having to break a dollar. Talk about pressure! He doesn't change anything about his pump, though, and he turns that fluid squeeze into $20.00 on the nose. That's what makes him a Hall of Famer."