Derek Jeter said he is retiring because he is simply ready to begin the second half of his life following the 2014 season. "I feel the time is right," said an unemotional Jeter, dressed in a Yankee hat, pullover and team shorts. "There are other things I want to do" On Wednesday, the 39-year-old Jeter spoke for the first time since announcing his retirement on Facebook a week ago. Jeter said he would like to start a family post-retirement, extend his business career, do more philanthropic work, all without the burden of a 162-game season. In 2013, Jeter only played 17 games because of a variety of injuries related to the dislocated ankle he suffered in Game 1 of the 2012 ALCS. He found the year tedious and had a lot of time to think about his future and decided he wanted to retire a few months ago. Friends and family advised him to wait before making the decision public. Jeter emphasized that his conditioning had nothing to do with his decision. "Physically I feel great and I look forward to playing a full season," said Jeter, who added he worked harder this winter than any previous one. Inside the media tent at George M. Steinbrenner Field, the Yankees' spring training home, all of Jeter's teammates and coaches joined owner Hal Steinbrenner, GM Brian Cashman and manager Joe Girardi at the team captain's news conference. A year ago, there was a similar scene when Mariano Rivera said that 2013 would be his final season. Jeter tried to play down the fuss, saying he didn't look at it as a retirement news conference because he still has a season to play. At one point, he even instructed Girardi to take the team out for drills, if they still had work to do. Jeter was not very reflective, but did answer what is most important to his legacy. "The thing that means the most to me is to be remembered as a Yankee," Jeter said. Jeter enters his final season needing just four hits to move past Paul Molitor's 3,319 for eighth place on the all-time list. Jeter, whose career corresponded with the expanded playoff format, has played in the most postseason games and racked up the most playoff hits and runs. He has helped the Yankees win five championships.
Jeter: 'The time is right'
ESPN New York | Feb 19