What stans think: That Jeter is as beloved all over the country as he is in N.Y.
What haters think: That every one of his 3,316 hits was either a swinging bunt, a blooper, or one of those pop-ups over Yankee Stadium's right field fence.
What realists think: That he was the best non-steroid infused SS of his time.
The mistake that New York and Boston (and ESPN) seem to make is that they think everyone wants those two markets stuffed down their holes anytime there's talk about baseball. Because of that misconception, Derek Jeter has become the unofficial sweetheart of America's pastime. You think this past season's forced Mariano craze was groan inducing? Wait until No. 2 retires. Final verdict: He's a first ballot Hall of Famer, no question. His sheer volume of hits alone makes him qualified. Barring any horrific injuries there's no doubt he'll finish his career in the top five of that category. But his legacy as a winner is pretty eye roll inducing because how many banners would he have hung if he was "The Captain" in Kansas City?