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"He’s not a true friend, is how I felt" - Derek Jeter opens up on his infamous bitterness with Alex Rodriguez in a new documentary

Jeter and Rodriguez look on from the dugout, New York Yankees v Kansas City Royals.
Jeter and Rodriguez look on from the dugout, New York Yankees v Kansas City Royals.
Oindrila Chowdhury

After staying tight-lipped on this controversial topic for a decade, former New York Yankees legend Derek Jeter chose to break his silence. Everybody in the MLB world is familiar with the strained relationship between Alex Rodriguez and Derek Jeter.

In his upcoming multi-part documentary, "The Captain," Derek Jeter mentioned that he realized Alex Rodriguez was "not a true friend."

Derek said, "He’s not a true friend, is how I felt. Because I wouldn’t do it to a friend."
Derek Jeter Admits 2001 Interview Led to Fall Out with Alex Rodriguez: 'Not a True Friend' people.com/sports/derek-j…
"Derek Jeter Admits 2001 Interview Led to Fall Out with Alex Rodriguez: 'Not a True Friend'" - @People

Alex Rodriguez and Derek Jeter were close friends before Alex gave the debatable interview with "Esquire," an American men's magazine, in 2001.

In 2001, Alex Rodriguez was playing with the Texas Rangers after signing a sizable deal in December 2000 worth $252 million. Derek Jeter was playing with the New York Yankees, an MLB team that had won the World Series four consecutive years.

In an interview with "Esquire," when asked about Jeter's character, Alex said:

"He’s reserved, quiet. Jeter’s been blessed with great talent around him. So he’s never had to lead. He doesn’t have to, he can just go and play and have fun, and hit second.
"I mean, you know, hitting second is totally different than hitting third or fourth in a lineup because you go into New York trying to stop Bernie [Williams] and [Paul] O’Neill and everybody. You never say, ‘Don’t let Derek beat you.’ That’s never your concern.”

After the "Esquire" interview with A-Rod came out, Jeter wasn't too happy with the remarks. Concerning Alex's words, Jeter mentions in "The Captain":

"As a friend, I’m loyal. I just looked at it as, ‘I wouldn’t have done it.’ Those comments bothered me because, like I said, I’m very, very loyal."

Here's what Alex had to say about Derek Jeter's displeasure about his remarks.

"When that came out, I felt really bad about it. I saw the way it was playing out. The way it was written, I absolutely said exactly what I said. It was a comment that I stand behind today. It was a complete tsunami. It was one of the greatest teams ever.
"To say that you don’t have to focus on just one player is totally fair. By the way, the same could be said about my team with the Mariners. We had Ken Griffey Jr., Edgar Martinez, Jay Buhner. If someone said that about me, I’d be like, ‘No s–t. Absolutely. You better not just worry about me.’”

Reportedly, Alex Rodriguez extended his apology to Jeter for his remarks in 2001.

Reason behind irreparable rupture between the Derek Jeter-Alex Rodriguez bromance

Rodrigues and Jeter, New York Yankees v Baltimore Orioles
Rodrigues and Jeter, New York Yankees v Baltimore Orioles

Derek Jeter seems to have forgiven Alex Rodriguez for his remark in the 2001 "Esquire" interview. However, A-Rod gave a similar interview to Dan Patrick on an ESPN radio show where he made a notorious comment.

Patrick asked, “So what’d you think of Jeter’s contract?”
Alex said, “There’s not one thing he does better than me.”

Once the statement was released, a blowout between the two MLB stars ensued.

MTV’s Rock and Jock celebrity baseball game with Derek Jeter and Alex Rodriguez, 1997 https://t.co/bZbhBc6dLi
"MTV’s Rock and Jock celebrity baseball game with Derek Jeter and Alex Rodriguez, 1997." - Baseball In Pics

In the documentary "The Captain," Jeter mentions:

“In my mind, he got his contract, so you’re trying to diminish what I’m doing, maybe to justify why you got paid. When you talk about statistics, mine never compared to Alex’s. I’m not blind. I understand that. But, we won! You can say whatever you want about me as a player. That’s fine."
Jeter added, “But then it goes back to the trust, the loyalty. This is how the guy feels. He’s not a true friend, is how I felt. Because I wouldn’t do it to a friend.

Despite being teammates for the New York Yankees and winning the World Series in 2009, the tense relationship never healed. Even after all these years, it remains unchanged.

"The Captain" will air on July 18 on ESPN after the Home Run Derby.


Edited by Jodi Whisenhunt

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