Sunday, October 31, 2010

Yankee fans must give Nunez a real chance

I'm sure Eduardo Nunez is excited about being a major leaguer, but it's got to be a little intimidating being looked at as the man who could eventually replace Derek Jeter at shortstop.

Like with Mariano Rivera, whoever replaces Jeter at short and in the lineup for the New York Yankees has some legendary shoes to fill. Is Nunez that guy? It's impossible to say at this point. We haven't seen enough of him to know how he's capable of playing and I would urge people to give him a real chance when he finally gets to the big leagues full time. But it's going to be a daunting task to replace Jeter and unless Nunez starts off like gangbusters, he's going to disappoint a lot of fans.

People will point to Jeter's success as a 21-year-old anchoring shortstop for a team that eventually won the World Series. But the major difference is that Jeter took over a position in a great state of flux, with nearly a dozen different players in the job in the 10-15 years before Jeter came along. Nunez is being asked to replace an icon who took hold of the shortstop job 15 years ago and never looked back, winning five world championships in the process.

I hope the baseball people are right and Nunez has both the skills and the fortitude to take over for Jeter. But he's going to need a lot of support along the way, including from us Yankee fans spoiled by Jeter's presence.


  1. I have serious doubts about his ability and the scouting reports don't instill a whole lot of confidence. I think that's a big difference between him and Jeter. Everyone expected Jeter to become great each step of the way because of his accomplishments. Unfortunately for Nunez, he really has no chance of replacing Derek. But, if he plays well, perhaps he can be successful in his own right. I do agree with your point that patience among fans will be majorly helpful in preserving the kid's confidence though.

  2. Exactly, you can't expect the kid to be Derek Jeter. That's completely unfair. But he could be a good big leaguer on his own. Unfortunately, if he does take over for Jeter, he's going to be compared to a legendary Yankee every day.