(Derek explains to Spike, “I’m only human,” and besides, those kids shouldn’t have been playing in the street)

Perhaps the only question more tiresome than “when will the Yankee fans stop riding A-Rod?” is “why can’t Derek Jeter leap into the stands, waive his magic wand and make everything OK?” The New York Daily News’ Sam Borden isn’t shy about posing the latter, however.

Derek Jeter sighed when the question was posed to him yesterday. He first heard it a few weeks ago, but for the second time this season there was a buzz among talk radio and other Yankees observers as to why the captain hasn’t “spoken out” in defense of his struggling teammate Alex Rodriguez.
“My job is to support him, to offer any support I can and that’s what I do – with all of my teammates,” Jeter said. “That’s my job. My job isn’t to tell fans what to do. What power do I have to do that?”

Jeter’s point is well-taken. As much as he is the leader of the Yankees, there is little he can say to reporters that actually will help Rodriguez get through his various woes. When Rodriguez was constantly getting booed at the Stadium, Jeter was asked repeatedly why he didn’t simply tell the fans to leave A-Rod alone.

“If I had that power, I’d have told them to stop booing me,” he said yesterday. “I think people just want to roll me into the situation with him. It doesn’t need to be that way. He will be fine.”

Though I hate to take exception with The Captain, surely he could take some inspiration from the way Pee Wee Reese befriended Jackie Robinson, or the way Ted Williams played catch with Pumpsie Green, or the way Mick Mars welcomed John Coradi into the fold. But if Derek Jeter wants to ignore his social responsibilty, who am I to argue?

(first inning HR’s to Preston Wilson and Lance Berkman aside, Orlando Hernandez was unfazed by the presence of Meat Loaf)

All things considered, Fox’s decision to allow Joe Buck to duet with Meat Loaf during this afternoon’s Astros/Mets game on a edited take of “Two Out Of Three Ain’t Bad” could’ve turned out far worse. Especially if they’d chosen “Paradise By The Dashboard Light”, with Buck taking the Phil Rizzuto part (and McCarver as Karla DeVito).