Five times New York Yankees legends Derek Jeter notched five hits in a single game. Here’s a look back at those impressive performances.
He’s one of only a handful of MLB players who have 1,000 multi-hit games, according to Bleacher Report.
Jeter finished his career with 1,014 such games, of which a symmetrical five were five-hit masterpieces.
Jeter never reached six or more hits in a game, and he didn’t break any records with his five-hit outputs. In fact, since one of them came in the postseason, he’s not even the Yankees’ leader.
Bernie Williams holds that honor, with all five of his five-hit games coming in the regular season.
But with Derek Jeter freshly elected to the MLB Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, there’s no better time than the present to take an in-depth look back at each of his top hit-accruing games.
May 23, 2001 vs. the Boston Red Sox
— Jono.Greco. (@jonogreco13) September 28, 2014
Jeter’s first five-hit game was extra special for a couple of reasons.
First, it came against the New York Yankees’ top rivals, the Boston Red Sox. Second, it was His first time facing starting pitcher David Cone.
Cone had been a Yankee for all of Jeter’s career before the 2001 season. The two had won four championships together, and Cone’s switch to the Red Sox created a truly strange visual when Jeter stepped into the box.
Jeter ripped Cone all over the joint in his first three at-bats. He lined a double to right field in the bottom of the first, a single to left center in the third, and another one-bagger to center in the fifth.
Cone left the game after five innings, but the Red Sox relievers were unable to slow down the Yankees’ shortstop. He clubbed a solo homer to left field against knuckleballer Tim Wakefield in the seventh inning, and then he legged out an infield single to third base off of Rod Beck in the eighth.
When all was said and done, Jeter was 5-for-5 with one RBI and three runs scored. The Bombers walked away with a 7-3 victory that moved the team to within a half game of the Sox for the American League Eastern Division lead.
New York ended up winning the division by 13.5 games over the second-place Sox that year.
June 21, 2005 vs. the Tampa Bay Devil Rays
Jeter’s next 5-hit performance came four years after his first. This time the Tampa Bay Devil Rays (as they were known at that time) were the victims.
Strangely enough, following a fly ball out to left field in the first frame, he collected the exact same line of hits as he did in his first five-hit game: one homer, one double, two singles to the outfield, and one infield single.
More importantly, Jeter’s five hits that day played a major role in helping the Bombers overcome a 10-2 deficit to win a genuine slugfest by a score of 20-11.
His first hit was double to left against Rays starter Hideo Nomo in the bottom of the third inning. Jeter eventually came around to score the Yankees’ first run of the game on a Gary Sheffield single, making the score 7-1 in favor of Tampa.
In the fifth, Jeter whacked a ground-ball single to left off of Nomo. Sheffield again drove him in with a three-run homer that made the score 10-5.
Jeter’s third hit was a bases-empty homer to center against Chad Orvella in the sixth, making the score 10-7.
The score was 11-7 when Jeter grounded a single through the right side of the infield in the eighth. He then scored the New York Yankees’ 9th run on an Alex Rodriguez base knock.
In his second at-bat of the eighth inning, with the Yankees up 15-11, Jeter hit an infield single to second base. He scored his fifth run of the day on Sheffield’s second dinger of the contest.
Oct. 3, 2006 vs. the Detroit Tigers
The third of Jeter’s five-knock contests was the first game of the 2006 American League Division Series against the Detroit Tigers.
Jeter peppered offerings from Tigers starter Nate Robertson all over the field. Captain Clutch lined a single to left in the first inning, a double to center in the third, a single to right in the fourth, and a second double to left in the sixth.
His fifth hit was a solo long ball to left center against reliever Jamie Walker. That homer gave Jeter his only RBI of the game and increased the Bombers’ lead to 7-4.
Jeter finished 5-for-5 with three runs scored and one RBI.
New York went on to win the game 8-4, but it was all for naught. Jeter went 3-for-11 the rest of the series, with two more doubles and zero RBIs, and the Yankees lost in four games.
July 9, 2011 vs. the Tampa Bay Rays
The greatest of all Jeter’s five-hit games is without question his July 9 gem against David Price and the Tampa Bay Rays in the Bronx. Jeter’s performance that day is convincing anecdotal proof of Yogi Berra’s famous assertion that baseball is 90 percent mental.
Entering the game, Jeter was a .257/.321/.329 hitter, in danger of delivering the worst season of his career. He was also a mere two hits shy of the lauded 3,000-hit milestone.
Jeter got off to a lucky start by grounding a seeing-eye single through the shortstop hole in his first at-bat. But what happened next was anything but weak.
In the third inning, with the crowd standing and chanting his name, he drove a hanging slider deep into the left field seats to become the only Bomber ever to accumulate 3,000 hits. The Bronx went ballistic.
In each of his subsequent plate appearances, he was greeted with standing ovations and tireless chanting. And every time he responded with a base hit.
Jeter’s relief at achieving the DJ3K milestone that was hash-tagged all over social media and made into special landing pages on major sports websites was obvious. A presumably relaxed and euphoric Jeter confidently tore Rays pitchers apart.
After a double in the fifth inning off Price and a patented right-field knock in the sixth against Brandon Gomes, Jeter drove in the game-winning run in the eighth with a single up the middle versus Joel Peralta.
The New York Yankees won 5-4, and Jeter’s slash line ballooned to .270/.331/.354. He finished the year at .297/.355/.388.
August 3, 2011 vs. the Chicago White Sox
Still riding high from reaching his milestone, Jeter put up his next five-hit game on August 3, 2011. It was a road tilt against the Chicago White Sox.
He started with a bunt single down the third base line in the first inning against starter Gavin Floyd. Jeter’s spot came around again in the second, and he drove and inside-out-single to right.
In the third Jeter grounded a single up the middle that drove in Jorge Posada and Russell Martin to give the Bombers a 10-1 lead.
He then sandwiched a fifth-inning single and eighth-inning double around a seventh-frame out to complete his fifth and final five-hit game. He added four runs scored to his pair of ribbies, accounting for one-third of his team’s total output in an 18-7 blowout.
In the end
These five games are a drop in the bucket of Jeter’s achievements, which led all but one Hall of Fame voter to select him for enshrinement in 2020.
Since his retirement in 2014, Jeter has aligned himself with another team, becoming part owner and CEO of the Miami Marlins.
But no matter what he does as an executive, New York Yankees fans can always stroll down memory lane and claim every one of his on-field accomplishments as their own.