Dear Yankees: I Am a Bad-Luck Charm

Photo: nick step

Ever since writing a post last fall asking what Derek Jeter is worth to the Yankees, I’ve been sent a number of requests asking how to best forecast the date when Jeter would get his 3,000th hit so as to be present for that special game.

Sorry, but I put very little thought into this problem. Why? Mostly out of self-interest: for me, this problem wasn’t much of a problem. I live in New York so if I wanted to try to see that game, I’d just wait until Jeter got fairly close and then buy tickets for an upcoming game. I had no travel or other issues to work around.

So on Sunday night, after Jeter got his 2,993rd hit, I looked at the Yankees’ schedule and figured my best bet would be the day game this Thursday against the Texas Rangers. It would be reasonable to expect that Jeter could get six hits in the intervening three games, putting him at the brink of 3,000; it would be the last game of the Yankees’ homestand; and I like bringing my kids to day games. So I took the plunge, paying way too much for a chance to witness history.

On Monday, Jeter got hurt. Went on the disabled list for the first time since 2005. Apparently I am the worst kind of bad-luck charm. I’d like to apologize to Jeter, the Yankees, and all the other fans who hoped to see him hit his 3,000th on this homestand. All I can say is that I plan to take my son to Fenway for a game this summer, and I’ll do my best to carry my bad-luck mojo up to Boston.


If you also happen to catch the Tigers, Twins, Royals or Indians as well, I wont be too upset.


Thanks a lot! Since winter, my self and some friends were college have been planning a baseball road trip. Philly tonight, Yankees Thursday, Mets Friday, Nationals Saturday. A month ago we realized Jeter had 30 hits to go, in 1 month. Our hopes were dashed Monday night when I saw "Jeter leaves game with calf injury, 1 hit." So much for seeing history.

Mike K

That's not how bad luck works! You can't just "aim" it wherever you wish. Being a jinx means your plans go awry. It's just common sense.


Someone who believes in bad-luck mojo should be aware that it's futile to try to use it to your advantage.


Yes. You inevitably fall prey to the dreaded meta-mojo.


" as to be present for that special game."

Yet more evidence - as though we needed any - that sports fans are completely nuts.


Luck aside, your assumption that Jeter would get six hits in three games (a pace of 324 per year) was likely flawed. While an in his prime Jeter may have been expected to get 1.25 hits per game (maybe a bit more at home), the current Jeter is definitely not in his prime and was highly unlikley to get to 3,000 atthe game you purchased tickets for.