Is that headline a little strong? Maybe but over the weekend I noticed an interesting phenomenon that I feel speaks volumes about where we are as a society.  As we all know over the weekend Derek Jeter reached 3,000 hits at Yankee Stadium.  A historic day for all Yankee fans and sports fans in general.  Certainly 3,000 hits is an amazing feat but very few people are talking something special that happened in the stands that nowadays may be even more rare than 3,000 hits.  I’m talking about the fan in the bleachers who caught Derek Jeter’s home run ball that was also Jeter’s 3,000th hit.  The lucky fan’s name was Christian Lopez a hard working 23 year old with over 100 grand in student loans.  Christian could have easily kept the ball and cashed in big time like many a fan before him.  Instead Christian pulled off a feat much more rare, especially these days, than 3,000 hits or 500 home runs.  That rare feat?  Christian Lopez actually showed integrity.  He gave the ball back to Jeter and requested nothing in return.  Christian Lopez’s should be honored for not putting his integrity up for sale on Saturday.  The Yankees were so appreciative that they ended up giving him a pretty sweet package for any Yankee fan.  The Yankees have always been a class organization and they showed that yet again here.  Even though Lopez asked for nothing the Yankees ended up giving him 4 luxury box tickets through the rest of the season and the playoffs as well as some Jeter signed memorabilia and a meeting with his favorite Yankee star, and future hall of famer, Derek Jeter.  The Yankees did the right thing here.  Now you may be asking yourself “But Coach what does this have to do with the downfall of society?”.  Well be patient and I’ll tell you.  I happened to come across tickets to yesterdays game.  Unfortunately I was there for Jeter’s 3004th hit and not his 3000th. Anyway as I was online to get my 5th hot dog and 3rd beer I couldn’t help but over hear a fan talking about Christian Lopez behind me.  I was chocked by what I heard.  “That kid is such an idiot” the fan said “Do you realize how much he could have gotten for that ball?  What a moron how could he not get the money?”.  Unfortunately I have seen the same sentiment online on many websites and blogs as well.  Is this where we are as a nation?  The guy behind me was old enough to be a father.  Is that the message he gives his kids?  Sell out Johnny get the cash anyway you can.  Cash in wherever, whenever, and however you can just as long as you get the money.  I guess that’s the message for today.  Christian Lopez was front row at the Yankee game on Sunday and was introduced to the sell out crowd to a hero’s welcome.  He might just be the new king Yankee fan.  Christian Lopez may just be the beacon of hope in a society consumed with the almighty dollar.  Lopez showed the same type of class and integrity that Jeter had shown his entire career.  Jeter has given all Yankee fans a great amount of joy over the years and giving the ball back to Jeter, it’s rightful owner, was the least he could do to thank Derek.  Pay attention America this is how you’re supposed to act.

9 Comments

  • That’s the dumbest article I’ve ever read. In my piece I’m talking about conversations I’ve overheard and stuff I’ve seen on FB and twitter. Most writers/bloggers have agreed with me. As for that article saying how awful of a person Jeter is for taking his ball back I sure hope it’s a joke. Sounds like something The Onion would do.

  • Hear Hear Coach. Well Played. That guy in line was probably the jerkhole who put the cup of coffee between his legs while driving then it spilled (shockingly) and he sued…and won?!? C’mon America we’re better than that. Please be better than that.

  • Seriously what exactly is the “integrity” involved in giving away hundreds of thousands of value while having no actual obligation whatsoever to do so?

  • First off Dangermouse I love your music. If I have to explain it to you it just proves my entire point but I’ll do it anyway. Jeter is the one who should have that ball. It’s his accomplishment. It would have been very easy for the fan to shake Jeter down just because he makes a lot of money. Christian Lopez knew what the right thing to do was. The right thing would be to give it to the guy you’ve cheered for your entire life and thank him for the joy he’s brought to you all these years. Not shake him down for every penny you can get simply because you were lucky enough to catch a ball. It wasn’t a lotto ticket it was a baseball. A baseball that belongs in Jeter’s possession and Jeter should be the one who decides what to do with it. If Jeter told him he could keep it then fine but if Jeter wants it he should be able to get it without having to pay out money for it. Just because someone makes more money than you it doesn’t mean it’s OK to take advantage of it. Get it now? That’s called integrity doing the right thing.

  • I agree. Noble or idiotic? Sad and disturbing. Do you realize that The Yankees are the most greediest money hungry organizations out there? Jeter or other players would go on strike just to make an extra buck. Wake up!!! If you did not want thye money it could of been used towards a charity instead ..Jeter is not in need. I think the …Yankees are laughing at Mr. Lopez as we speak. This game is a business and you the fan should treat it as such. Period. The right thing to do would of been to sell the ball, I’m sure Jeter would not even think twice about it. He is busy with his glamorous life, Good job Lopez. You could of done the same. Just remember the players would never put a fan before themselves. You could of done great things with the money. I see nothing heroic about it. If Jeter pays off your school loans then maybe you win. we will see but I doubt he will remember you.

    • It seems like your issues are with the Yankees and rich people and corporations in general. How exactly are the Yankees the greediest organization? Because they run a good business and put money into their team so they could produce the best product for their fans? If I had to guess I’d say you’re a Met fan. Maybe a Red Sox fan but they are even dumber. The Yankees run a good business that turns a lot of profit. They never break any rules or make the money in an unscrupulous way so how is it greedy? They also do more than any other team for charity and are forced to pay other teams out of pocket because of a ridiculous “luxury” tax. I guess the Kansas City Royals aren’t greedy because they don’t turn as big a profit and lose all the time. They just take the Yankee checks every year and put it in the owner’s pocket. Yea they aren’t greedy. They just put any old team out there so they could turn a profit and really could care less about the product on the field. The Royals aren’t the greedy ones though. But what you don’t realize is that in making your awful argument you actually contradict yourself. You call the Yankees greedy because they make a lot of cash. Jeter is greedy because he makes a lot of cash. Then you call the fan an idiot because he DIDN’T make a lot of cash. Which is it supposes to be? As soon as that kid sold the ball he’d be greedy. The Yankees didn’t have to give him anything. Instead they gave him stuff that’s worth over a hundred grand and if he wants to he could always sell it off and make a little dough. Why is it Jeter’s responsibility to pay off the kid’s loans? Oh right because he makes a lot of money and Lopez should take advantage of that. That wouldn’t be greedy at all. I have a few friends that make up to 10 times as much money as I do. Never in my life have I asked them for a penny even in times where I could have really used it. Some of them, out of the kindness of their own heart, treat me all the time to dinner and things but never once have I asked or expected it. THAT would be greedy. I’ve even tried to treat them sometimes. Even if they never treated me I’d still be friends with them. That’s the point. I bet if you had a couple of rich friends you’d expect them to shell out for you just because they make a lot of money. YOU sir would be the greedy one. Just because the Yankees and Jeter make a lot of money doesn’t mean you should have a sense of entitlement and that is the point of the article. Too many people have that sense of entitlement and you are a prime example.

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