Derek Jeter has been getting plenty of thoughtful and sincere retirement gifts from other MLB teams in his final season, but Baltimore Orioles manager Buck Showalter -- The Captain's first big-league skipper -- suggested a present that's more a parting shot than a tribute.
The Washington Post reports that Showalter told reporters that he’d like to give Jeter a photo of the shortstop’s controversial home run during an American League Championship Series game against the Orioles in 1996, where 12-year-old Yankees fan Jeffrey Maier reached over an outfield wall and appeared to have scooped a just-short ball out of the playing field.
“I would give him a big picture of the home run,” Showalter said Monday before the team’s win against the Yankees. “Well, it wasn't a home run. We know that. That’s what I'd give him. A big picture and have the whole Baltimore Orioles team sign it. That’s a good idea. That’s cheap, too, right? Make it in bronze or something. Not that we remember that at all.”
The hit turned out to be a game-tying home run that helped push New York to the Game 1 win. Baltimore would end up losing the series in five games and Jeter and the Yankees would go on to win the World Series.
Orioles fans were outraged that officials didn't call fan interference on the play.
Showalter managed the Yankees from 1992 to 1995 and sat in the dugout during Jeter's big-league debut in 1995.
Jeter likely won't receive the photo or any other tribute from Showalter and the O’s until the two teams meet for their final series of the regular season at Yankee Stadium in late September.
Jeter’s previous gifts include a pinstriped surfboard from the Los Angeles Angels, a park bench made of blue and white baseball bats from the Chicago White Sox, a subway tile mosaic from the Mets and Yankees-themed cowboy boots from both the Rangers and Astros.