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Derek Jeter Says He Doesn’t Have Any Interest in Being a Color Commentator for Games

Congratulations go out to Jimmy Traina and SI as the SI Media Podcast just hit episode No. 500. With a big episode celebration came a big guest as former New York Yankees star and current FOX Sports baseball analyst Derek Jeter joined him prior to the broadcast of the St. Louis Cardinals and San Francisco Giants game at Rickwood Field in Birmingham.

Traina, who is a huge Yankees fan, told Jeter he never thought he would be a player who would get into broadcasting. Jeter said he didn’t think he would have either, but here he is now a part of FOX Sports and their MLB on FOX studio team with Kevin Burkhardt, Alex Rodriguez and David Ortiz

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“When you talk about the broadcasting side of things, I thought never would I do it, just because my time was consumed elsewhere,” Jeter told Traina. “I got a chance to do something with the guys at the World Series in Philadelphia a couple of years ago and I saw how much fun they were having. When they originally reached out, I was like, ‘absolutely not,’ and then I got a chance to think about it a little bit more.

“I think it keeps you connected to the game, you still get a chance to watch games and stay connected to the sport. I still think it’s the greatest sport in the world and I was all in. We have a great time. I’ve known Alex [Rodriguez] for a long time and gotten to know Kevin [Burkhardt] who is the best, the absolute best. To watch him on a daily basis and deal with doing a World Series game and then having to leave to do an NFL game on Sunday. It’s remarkable what he is able to do. He makes it comfortable, and he makes it easy.”

Traina asked Jeter about what he has learned about broadcasting since starting with FOX Sports in June 2023. “I have learned it’s supposed to be fun,” Jeter said. “Quite frankly, you can’t say anything wrong. People can disagree with your opinions but ultimately, you’re just giving ideas and telling about your experiences and sharing the information and knowledge you learned throughout your playing career.

“It’s fun to sit down and watch games as a fan. I didn’t like watching games when I played because I wanted to be on the field. Now I get to watch it as a fan and see it through another lens.”

Traina also asked Jeter about broadcasters he enjoyed listening to or who had made an impact on him, and he was quick to give his response.

“It starts with Phil Rizzuto. I was a Yankees fan growing up. He stands out for me at the top of the list because I fell in love with the sport listening to Phil Rizzuto.” Jeter went on to talk about other Yankee broadcasters including the recently retired John Sterling, Suzyn Waldman and Michael Kay. “Going back to the special moments in my career, they are the soundtrack. They hold a special place in my heart and in my career. John Sterling is going to be missed, he is a special and unique character.”

Jeter, who is ten years removed from his playing days, said he enjoys what he is doing now with FOX Sports and thinks it is a perfect match with what he has time to prepare for. When Traina asked him if he would have an interest in being a color commentator and sit in the booth, Jeter showed no interest right now.

“Doing entire games and doing pre- and post-games are completely different,” he said. “Doing an entire game, that’s stressful. You have to talk for two and a half to three straight hours, and you have to be interesting. Pre- and post-game you have a few segments to speak your mind and post-game you are reacting to the game and the highlights of what you saw. I don’t have any interest at this point to do entire games. It’s just a lot of talking and dissecting and I really enjoy what I do now.”

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