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The Captain: The Journey of Derek Jeterby Ian Oconnor
Synopses & Reviews
Every spring, Little Leaguers across the country mimic his stance and squabble over
the right to wear his number, 2, the next number to be retired by the worldandrsquo;s most famous ball team.
Derek Jeter is their hero. He walks in the footsteps of Ruth, Gehrig, DiMaggio, and Mantle, and
someday his shadow will loom just as large. Yet he has never been the best player in baseball. In fact,
he hasnandrsquo;t always been the best player on his team. But his intangible grace and Jordanesque ability
to play big in the biggest of postseason moments make him the face of the modern Yankee dynasty,
and of Americaandrsquo;s game. In The Captain, best-selling author Ian Oandrsquo;Connor draws on extensive reporting and unique
access to Jeter that has spanned some fifteen years toand#160; reveal how a biracial kid from Michigan became New Yorkandrsquo;s most beloved sports figure and the enduring symbol of the steroid-free athlete. Oandrsquo;Connor takes us behind the scenes of a legendary baseball life and career, from Jeterandrsquo;s early struggles in the minor leagues, when homesickness and errors in the field threatened a stillborn career, to his heady days as a Yankee superstar and prince of the city who squired some of the worldandrsquo;s most beautiful women, to his tense battles with former best friend A-Rod. We also witness Jeter struggling to come to terms with his declining skills and the declining favor of the only organization he ever wanted to play for, leading to a contentious contract negotiation with the Yankees that left people wondering if Jeter might end his career in a uniform without pinstripes. Derek Jeterandrsquo;s march toward the Hall of Fame has been dignified and certain, but behind that
leadership and heroandrsquo;s grace there are hidden struggles and complexities that have never been
explored, until now. As Jeter closes in on 3,000 hits, a number no Yankee has ever touched, The
Captain offers an incisive, exhilarating, and revealing new look at one of the gameandrsquo;s greatest
players in the gloaming of his career.
This unparalleled close-up is the definitive book of baseball's most iconic player, Derek Jeter. The shortstop-next-door, the King of the City, the last clean champion of the game, learn what has made Jeter the face—and the hero—of the last Yankee dynasty, those teams that won four World Series championships in five years.
Surprisingly, one of sports most contentious, complex, and defining clashes played out not in the boxing ring or at the line of scrimmage but on the genteel green fairways of the worlds finest golf courses. Arnie and Jack. Palmer and Nicklaus. Their fifty-year duel, in both the clubhouse and the boardroom, propelled each to the status of American icon and pushed modern golf to the heights and popularity it enjoys today.
Arnie was the cowboy, with rugged good looks, Popeye-like forearms, a flailing swing, and charm enough to win fans worldwide. Jack was scientific, precise, conservative, aloof, even fat and awkward. Ultimately, Nicklaus got the better of Palmer on the course, beating him in major victories 18-7. But Palmer bested Nicklaus almost everywhere else, especially in the hearts of the public and in endorsement dollars. By the end of this page-turning narrative, we see that each man wanted what the other had: Arnold wanted the trophies. Jack wanted the love.
In the tradition of John Feinstein and Mark Frost, Ian OConnor has written a compelling account of one of the greatest rivalries in sports history.
“Derek Jeter is undoubtedly the most talked about, argued about, cheered, booed and ultimately respected baseball player of his generation. And as public a figure as he has been, he is in many ways the least known. That changes now as Ian OConnor, one of the best sports writers anywhere, goes deep and does what no one has quite been able to do: Tell us a bit about who Derek Jeter really is.”—Joe Posnanski, author of The Machine
“Deftly told.”—Washington Post
In The Captain, Ian OConnor draws on unique access to Derek Jeter and more than 200 new interviews to reveal how a biracial kid from Michigan became New Yorks most beloved sports figure and the face of the steroid-free athlete. OConnor takes us behind the scenes of a legendary baseball life, from Jeters early struggles in the minor leagues, when homesickness and errors threatened a stillborn career, to the heady days of Yankee superiority and nightlife, to the battles with former best friend A-Rod. All along the way, Jeter has made his Hall-of-Fame destiny look easy. But behind that leadership and heros grace there are hidden struggles and complexities that have never been explored, until now.
About the Author
IAN O'CONNOR is a nationally recognized sports columnist who has won numerous Associated Press awards. Currently he writes for ESPNNewYork.com and hosts a radio show for ESPN. He is the author of Arnie and Jack, a New York Times bestseller, and The Jump.
Table of Contents
1. The Kalamazoo Kid 1
2. The Draft 21
3. E-6 47
4. Rookie of the Year 73
5. Champion 97
6. Perfection 124
7. Dynasty 147
8. The Flip 178
9. New Guys 209
10. Alex 244
11. The Great Divide 273
12. Moment of Truth 299
13. Rebirth 331
A Note on the Author’s Interviews and Sources 382
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