As if acting against his own intentions, Pete Rose has suddenly given life or belief to the once-unthinkable chance that Derek Jeter will – someday – become the MLB’s all-time hits leader.
Sitting 952 back of Rose’s mark of 4,256, Jeter is 38 and just finished a campaign atop the league’s hits chart. He pulled in 212, which is seven better than Triple Crown’er Miguel Cabrera. The only thing that’s aged about him is his hairline, and his defense is as stout as an Irish lager. He can ball with the best of them, and his play is making Alex Rodriguez look just that much worse.
The real question, though… why did Pete Rose even bring this up?
This debate was non-existent among almost everybody without a stat counter. It was given life by an article from Dan Szymborski in August, when he said Jeter could not only reach 4K, but also topple Pete if all the dominos line up.
In the above video, Colin Cowherd accurately describes Pete Rose’s pride and his love for his own record. Deservedly so. When you best 4,200 hits and shatter the dreams of baseball’s most hated all-time personality, Ty Cobb, you deserve to wake up with a smile.
But, for Jeter, he now has something to shoot for. He has somebody and something to target. He has a new goal to aim for, or hit for (pun intended).
Pete Rose has resurrected the debate, and now it seems possible. How? Because it no longer seems impossible.