It's been an ugly final season for The Captain to say the least. While he has managed to stay almost completely healthy and on the field for the entirety, he's looked like an extremely weak and watered down version of the player he was as recently as 2 years ago. Father Time has caught up to Derek Jeter in a big way and easiest way to see that is to look at how bad he's been against fastballs. That's a topic that Mike Petriello of FanGraphs covered earlier today, and while I invite and encourage you to read the whole thing because it's great, the standout of the piece is this statement:
"In April, Jeter saw just 30.9 percent fastballs at or above 92. Since May 1, that’s jumped by 10 percent, and while there’s something to be said for the overall velocity of the sport tending to increase past April, the fact is simply this: Jeter can’t catch up to good fastballs any longer, and teams are increasingly taking advantage of it. It’s getting to the point than other than the occasional breaking ball just to keep him from timing it, you wonder why he’s ever not seeing fastballs."
There it is in a nutshell, folks. The word is out that Jeter ain't what he used to be and pitchers are just dialing it up knowing that he can't do anything with it. The signs have been there since April, when his solid start was almost entirely right field-focused, and they've been coming to the forefront ever since. The Farewell Tour appears to be the priority for the Yankees over winning games, so whatever, maybe it's not that big a deal. As long as that continues and Jeter stays in the 2-hole, the Yankee offense will continue to underperform because there's nothing to indicate he's going to turn this around.
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