By Artie Greenberg on February 23, 2014
Derek Jeter’s final season should prove to be just as memorable as Mariano Rivera’s magical farewell tour. As a universally respected face of the game, the Captain is sure to receive a lot of love from fans at opposing stadiums, and it would be smart of him to prepare a wing of St. Jetersburg to hold about twenty-five farewell gifts. Mariano received some pretty clever, heartwarming, and funny gifts from opposing teams. San Diego gave him five beach cruiser bicycles for him and his family, while Minnesota presented him a “Chair of Broken Dreams”, made from broken bats. Most teams also included very generous charitable donations.
What the hell do you give a guy like Derek Jeter? The man has more money than he could ever know what to do with, and isn’t exactly the sentimental type. Unless you can find him a nice girl that he can settle down with, you’d better get creative. I’m going to give my predictions for what each team in Major League Baseball would give Derek to commemorate his impending retirement.
Arizona Diamondbacks: Randy Johnson will personally apologize to Jeter in front of home plate for letting down the Yankees after they traded for him almost a decade ago, and then present him with a stupid cactus or something.
Atlanta Braves: The recently retired Chipper Jones will present Derek with a loaf of banana bread that he baked all by himself, because he’s been really into baking recently. Jeter will then question if he’s really ready to retire.
Baltimore Orioles: Jeffrey Hammonds, Baltimore’s pick in Jeter’s draft class, will give Jeter a #2 Orioles jersey to remind Jeter that they could have picked him before the Yankees. The jersey will take an enormous psychological toll on Jeter and haunt his dreams.
Boston Red Sox: David Ortiz drives a Yankee-painted Duckboat onto the field, tosses Jeter the keys, and let him know that the gas tank is almost empty and it only takes diesel.
Chicago Cubs: The Cubs will give Jeter an actual bear cub named Wrigley. Trying to do the right thing, Jeter releases Wrigley into the wild, accidentally casting the “Bear Hex” upon the Cubs and condemning them to a thousand years of losing.
Chicago White Sox: Realizing that Jeter probably already has many pairs of white socks, the White Sox instead get him several pairs of boxer briefs. Jeter is secretly thrilled.
Cincinnati Reds: Assuming he’s one of those “Jew Yorkers”, the Reds present Jeter with a Torah, and congratulate him on becoming a man.
Cleveland Indians: The Indians will give Jeter a lifetime membership to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, and spam him with emails until he angrily unsubscribes and clicks the option, “I am no longer interested”.
Colorado Rockies: The Sink Tank eagerly anticipates what should be the first, and last, public gift of marijuana from a team to a player.
Detroit Tigers: Realizing that they forgot to get Jeter anything, the Tigers organization will print out a picture of a Kindle, and announce over the PA system “Amazon just confirmed the order and Jeter will have it in 5-7 business days”.
Houston Astros: After giving Rivera a collage painting of his great Yankee moments, the Astros will again take the artistic route, giving Jeter a very unsettling collection of black and white photographs depicting Jeter as he enters and exits his apartment building.
Kansas City Royals: The Royals will present Jeter with a pretty nice meat smoker. Jeter will never use it, but he’ll feel a little guilty every time he orders take-out from Dinosaur Barbecue.
Los Angeles Angels: A catastrophic earthquake will devastate the city in early June, halting all baseball games in Los Angeles for the foreseeable future and putting plans for a Jeter celebration on hold. Scientists will concur that it was “just a matter of time before something like this happened”.
Los Angeles Dodgers: Jeter will receive an autographed copy of Vin Scully’s autobiography, as read by Morgan Freeman. While the written version is only a hundred and fifty pages, the audiobook spans thirty seven CDs and doesn’t fit on Jeter’s hard drive.
Miami Marlins: Kind of strapped for cash, the Marlins will give Jeter a big group hug.
Milwaukee Brewers: Bud Selig will personally roll out a red carpet from the visitor’s dugout to shortstop, and give Derek a piggyback ride out to the infield. He will then present Jeter with the inaugural “Most Beloved Player” award. Alex Rodriguez is admitted to a Miami hospital shortly after the ceremony with dangerously high blood pressure.
Minnesota Twins: “A Target gift card should be good, right?”
New York Mets: David Wright will present Jeter with a miniature Statue of Liberty, complete with a little light that flickers when you turn it on, and a 10-pack of “I Heart NY” t-shirts. Fans and journalists alike will wonder which gift shop the Mets went to.
Philadelphia Phillies: Derek will receive a round-trip Amtrak coach ticket from Philadelphia to New York, and a framed poster of the Philadelphia skyline, captioned with their new tourism slogan: “It’s really not that far from New York”.
Pittsburgh Pirates: The Pirates will give Jeter a sweater with a gift receipt, but feel like it’s a reasonably safe bet.
Oakland Athletics: The A’s will give Jeter a switchblade, so he can walk back to a hotel from the Coliseum after it gets dark, instead of hiding in the clubhouse overnight like the rest of the team.
San Diego Padres: The Padres will give Jeter a really cool bicycle, and then try to trade their star 3B Chase Headley to Jeter to get the bicycle back.
San Francisco Giants: Always a classy organization, the Giants will hand Jeter with a key to the city of San Francisco. Touched, Jeter will take a look at housing prices in San Francisco, but find himself priced out.
Seattle Mariners: Robinson Cano will give Jeter a Nintendo Wii and a bunch of games, as Jeter scornfully stares at Cano’s new beard.
St. Louis Cardinals: The Cardinals will present Jeter with a golden model of the Gateway Arch. Jeter will quietly wonder if they just gave him half of a McDonald’s sign.
Tampa Bay Rays: Jeter will receive a patch of Astro-turf from Tropicana Field, along with a wiffle ball set, a case of RC Cola, and a fake Rolex.
Texas Rangers: The Rangers will present Jeter with a mechanical bull, which Jeter will ride for twenty years, and then get inducted into the Bull Riding Hall of Fame.
Toronto Blue Jays: The Jays will give Jeter a boot. Get it?
Washington Nationals: The Nationals will gift Jeter a Netflix subscription, and ask him if he’s seen House of Cards yet.