For a guy with five World Series rings, newly retired New York Yankees captain Derek Jeter insists there's one title he's not interested in: Most eligible bachelor.
“No, no, no," he told TODAY's Matt Lauer, who'd considered Jeter for that title, now that George Clooney's married. "I try to stay away from that.”
After punctuating a legendary career with a game-winning hit in his Yankee Stadium finale and a surprisingly reverent tribute by the rival Boston Red Sox, Jeter sat down with Lauer for the 14-time All Star's first TV interview since his retirement.
The likely Hall of Fame inductee also chatted with Lauer about growing up, keeping his dating life private, and setting new goals in retirement.
Said Jeter, “It’s funny, because someone had mentioned to me: I went from an old man in baseball to a young man in life. And I liked how that sounded. So, I consider myself young again.”
- On keeping his dating life private: “I've always drawn the line between what I do for a profession and my private life. I think once you open that door, you can't shut it."
- On resisting Twitter: “I don't really see myself getting a Twitter account. Nothing against it. I get it. I especially get it for businesses.”
- On growing up biracial: “Times are a little bit different now than they were when I grew up. You know, you got stares. Yeah, if you're with one particular parent, you get stares. With the other one, you get stares. If they're both together, then you get a lot of whispers. But it taught me to get to know people on the inside.”
- On treating people with respect: “I always have tried to treat people with respect — the way I want to be treated. I've always been very cautious with what I do. That started at a young age. I've always had the approach or the mentality that I never wanted to embarrass my parents.”
- On trying to keep his emotions in check during his final home game: “I was on the verge of a breakdown, it started when I was driving into the stadium. Not a breakdown at that point, but you know, I had some tears in my eyes. And then I got to the stadium and — I was at my locker and I'm thinking about, this is the last time I'm gonna be here. And once again, tears and during the game, I had to go into the bathroom a couple times to try to keep it together.”
- On his game-winning hit in his final home game: “Unless it was game seven of the World Series, it couldn't have been any better.”
- On getting a rousing ovation from fans of the arch-rival Boston Red Sox: “My name has been part of many chants in Fenway Park, but [previous chants were] bad things.”
- On the chances he might come out of retirement to play again: “I'm finished, buddy; 100 percent sure.”
- On his new goal: “My dreams do not end with playing Major League Baseball. I have other dreams and I've been vocal about one day wanting to own a team and calling the shots. And I believe that's gonna happen.”
- On his new book, “The Contract,” targeting middle-school readers: “Kids are our future. You know, one day, I hope to have kids. … This [book] has a lot to do with the lessons that I've learned.”