Five players were selected ahead of Derek Jeter in the 1992 MLB draft, and one of them happens to be the current third-base coach of the Yankees.
Phil Nevin was tabbed as the first-overall pick by the Astros as a third baseman out of Cal-State Fullerton, and he went on to play 12 seasons in the majors with seven teams.
The others selected ahead of Jeter, who will be enshrined Wednesday in the Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, were pitchers Paul Shuey (Indians) and B.J. Wallace (Expos) and outfielders Jeffrey Hammonds (Orioles) and Chad Mottola (Reds).
Nevin joked that he recently read an article that compared the five players picked ahead of Jeter to the six quarterbacks taken ahead of Tom Brady in the 2000 NFL Draft.
“They had the Brady 6 and the Jeter 5. It made it sound like we were all failures in front of him. … Obviously not Hall of Famers, but a few of us had an impact on the game,” Nevin said. “The draft in baseball is such a crapshoot compared to the NBA or the NFL. … But it’s an honor to have your name mentioned with players like Derek, to be honest. It was an honor to be on the same field with him for so long. I see him, I consider him an acquaintance because of [that connection]. I’m happy that tomorrow is finally going to happen for him and for [fellow inductee] Larry Walker.”
Nevin drove in over 100 runs three times, including his lone All-Star appearance for the Padres in 2001, when he batted .306 with 41 homers, 126 RBIs and a career-best .976 OPS.
Aaron Boone, a second-half teammate of Jeter’s on the 2003 Yankees squad that lost to the Marlins in the World Series, said current players grew up with the former captain as “the face of Major League Baseball.”
“Absolutely, you can’t help being a part of this organization and know the impact that Derek’s had,” Boone said. “It’s somebody that I’m sure you walk through there and a handful of guys he was their favorite player and for the modern player, people are very aware of.”
Asked for his brief tenure as Jeter’s teammate, Boone added: “It was awesome. I always looked at him as a great player. When I got here and got to play alongside him, what I tell people all the time, he was better than I thought he was. The most confident player I’ve probably ever played with. I might have played with better or more talented players, but no one played the game with the fearless confidence that Derek brought to the field every day, and certainly in the biggest moments.”
Boone said Domingo German (shoulder) and Luis Severino (shoulder) threw bullpen sessions before Tuesday’s game. … Luis Gil will start Wednesday followed by Nestor Cortes Jr. the next night Jordan Montgomery will pitch the series opener Friday against the Mets followed by Corey Kluber on Saturday. … Boone said pitcher Michael King (finger) “could potentially be back with us later in the week.”