February 14, 2011

Joe Girardi: Derek Jeter to hit leadoff

Joe Girardi dodged several important questions about the Yankees going into 2011, but then unequivocally said Derek Jeter is the leadoff hitter.

Why? Girardi said he felt Jeter was “back to being Derek” in September. It’s nice that he’s trying to instill some confidence in him.

But he must have been dreaming.

Jeter finished the year decently, but only relative to his awful  June, July and August — NOT relative to his Hall of Fame career numbers prior to 2010.

Brett Gardner should hit leadoff to start the season, and Jeter should drop to seventh. Gardner’s skill set makes him an obvious choice — my Twitter followers agree.

I’m sorry, but Jeter needs to prove he can hit for average and get on base like he has every year of his career prior to 2010. We all saw what Jeter struggled with last year. It made most of us sick to our stomachs. Too. Many. Groundballs.

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