Thursday, April 8, 2010

Yankee trio still loving life together

After playing together in Game 2 of the 2010 regular season, Derek Jeter, Mariano Rivera and Jorge Posada have played together for 16 consecutive years with the New York Yankees, more than any other group of teammates in major sports history. Not just baseball, but football, basketball and hockey too. In doing so, they passed several legendary groups of teammates, including George Brett, Hal McRae and Frank White of the Kansas City Royals.

(Andy Pettitte, the other member of the Core Four, is not included in this group because he left for Houston for three years to, as David Letterman once put it, run a Dairy Queen).

What is amazing is the affection they still have for each other after all these years in the big leagues together. I’ve gotten tired of people I’ve worked with a lot faster than that. But they think of each other as brothers, having played together since they were kids in the minor leagues. “It’s wonderful,” Mo said with a huge smile in an interview with NESN. “Thank God for that.”

They still tease each other like kids, with Jeter -- no spring chicken himself at 35 -- kidding Mo and Jorge for being older.

They also still share a burning desire to keep winning and they reflected on their playoff experiences together.

Jorge said the 2001 World Series was the toughest loss for him because they were so
close and it followed the events of September 11, when the Yankees tried to cheer up their city with a thrilling playoff run. "We were destined to win that series and it was tough to lose," he said in an interview with Bob Costas.

Mo said he learned something from all his failures, including the importance of setting your feet to make a throw after making the bad throw to second base in Game 7 that cost the Yankees a victory in that series. "Once you learn, drop it because there's nothing that you can do about it," he said.

Jeter said he still gets butterflies despite his impressive postseason resume. "If you didn't get butterflies, it means you didn't care," Jeter said. "When you get to this point, everyone cares about winning and losing. But I think it's just how you control those feelings when you're in those situations."

Thanks to Googie man via en.Wikipedia for the photo.

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