Derek Jeter Getty

Derek Jeter has marks to shoot for in final season

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Not that he ever seemed particularly motivated by personal milestones, but any dream of 4,000 hits and a run at Pete Rose died for Derek Jeter when he suffered a fractured ankle in the 2012 postseason. Never healthy in 2013, he played in just 17 games due to a quad injury and continued soreness in the ankle. Now he says his age-40 season will be his last, and just how much he’ll be able to play in 2014 remains unclear. The hope is that he’ll be an effective regular while playing shortstop and DHing on occasion. But that remains to be seen.

While Jeter will be gunning for a sixth World Series ring and not any round numbers this year, his career totals are coming into focus. The future Hall of Famer currently ranks 10th all-time in hits, 13th in runs scored and 29th in total bases. Let’s see how much higher he can go:

Hits
1. Pete Rose – 4,256
2. Ty Cobb – 4,189
3. Hank Aaron – 3,771
4. Stan Musial – 3,630
5. Tris Speaker – 3,514
6. Cap Anson – 3,435
7. Honus Wagner – 3,420
8. Carl Yastrzemski – 3,419
9. Paul Molitor – 3,319
10. Derek Jeter – 3,316

Before the ankle injury, Jeter seemed like a good bet to end up third on the career list. Now, he’s probably going to finish sixth with a relatively healthy season. He’s 120 hits away from moving past Anson at 3,435. At his career rate, Jeter averages 120 hits in 95 games played. Of course, he’s probably not the same .312 hitter now that he’s been over the course of his career, but as long as he plays in 110 games or so, he should top Anson.

Fifth place isn’t completely out of reach, but it would require quite a last hurrah, as he needs 199 hits to pass Speaker. He did have 216 hits just two years ago in 2012. However, it’s hard to imagine him starting the 150 or so games he’d need to have any chance of collecting 200 hits this season.

Runs scored
7. Willie Mays – 2,062
8. Cap Anson – 1,999
9. Stan Musial – 1,949
10. Alex Rodriguez – 1,919
11. Lou Gehrig – 1,888
12. Tris Speaker – 1,882
13. Derek Jeter – 1,876

Jeter needs just 44 runs scored to finish this season in the top 10, but to stay there, he’ll also likely have to pass Musial by scoring 74 runs. That’s because the suspended Rodriguez still figures to add to his total before he’s done.

Total bases
19. Mel Ott – 5,041
20. Jimmie Foxx – 4,956
21. Ted Williams – 4,884
22. Honus Wagner – 4,870
23. Paul Molitor – 4,854
24. Al Kaline – 4,852
25. Reggie Jackson – 4,834
26. Manny Ramirez – 4,826
27. Andre Dawson – 4,787
28. Chipper Jones – 4,755
29. Derek Jeter – 4,739

Jeter needs 261 total bases to become the 20th player all-time with 5,000, but that’s going to be a tough one. He’s averaged 1.82 total bases per game over the course of his career, so 261 amounts to 143 games worth of production from him. And, again, he’s probably not going to be quite the player he used to be. Jeter should at least pass Wagner to become the  No. 2 shortstop on the list. Cal Ripken Jr. is at 5,168. A-Rod, at 5,480, could still be considered a shortstop, too, but he’s one season away from having played more games at third base than his original position.

One other thing Jeter figures to do this season is pass Luis Aparicio for second place on the games played list at shortstop. Omar Vizquel is the all-time leader at 2,709, following by Aparicio at 2,581 and Jeter at 2,544. He’s already the leader for hits by a shortstop.

Rangers sign Josh Hamilton to a minor league deal

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The Texas Rangers have signed Josh Hamilton to a minor league contract with an invitation to spring training.

Not at all surprising. The Rangers released Hamilton last August, but that was simply to make some room on the 40-man roster. His season was already toast due to the surgery he underwent to repair lateral and meniscus cartilage in his left knee which had the added bonus of revealing that he had an ACL injury as well, which required reconstruction. At the time of his release both he and the Rangers made noises about him coming back on a minor league deal in 2017.

Hamilton turns 36 in May. The smart money has it that his big league career is over, but Hamilton would be silly to retire given that he is owed $30 million this coming season. That the Angels are paying $26.41 million of that makes it far less painful for the Rangers as well. If he can hit in the spring, hey, let him DH some and pay him low money. If not, no skin off of anyone’s nose. He can request a release on April 1 if he hasn’t made the big league roster.

A-Rod to host a reality show featuring broke ex-athletes

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Alex Rodriguez’s transition into retirement has featured a serious move into the business world. He has gone back to school, worked seriously on investments and has started his own corporation. Yes, he’s set for life after making more money than any baseball player in history, but even if his bank account wasn’t fat, you get the sense that he’d be OK given what we’ve seen of his work ethic and savvy in recent years.

He’s going to be getting another paycheck soon, though. For hosting a reality show featuring athletes who are not in as good a financial shape as A-Rod is:

Interesting. Hopefully, like so many other reality shows featuring the formerly rich and famous, this one is not exploitative. Not gonna hold my breath because that’s what that genre is all about, unfortunately, but here’s hoping A-Rod can help some folks with this.