NEW YORK–Derek Jeter knows what’s at stake. If he can get just one more hit in tonight’s game versus the Orioles, he will not only take sole possession of first place in the all-time Yankees hit list. He may also finally erase all memory of the tyrannical Lou Gehrig, history’s greatest monster.
The fearsome first baseman, who played for the Bronx Bombers from 1923 to 1939, amassed 2,721 hits during a major league career that nearly brought a nation to its knees. Jeter’s next hit could very well remove the stain of his name from the Yankee record books for evermore.
Gehrig bullied his way into the starting lineup for the first time in 1925, pushing aside beloved first baseman Wally Pipp and selfishly refusing to share the position. At the time, a shaken Yankee manager Miller Huggins told The New York Times, “He simply overpowered me. It’s out of my hands now.” Huggins was later found brutally murdered in a ritualistic manner that haunted the nightmares of all the policemen called to the scene.
Gehrig also formed the infamous Murderer’s Row that menaced American League pitching and slashed throats on its way from one major league park to another in the 1920s and 30s. He was nicknamed The Iron Horse for his cold, steely, inhuman gaze, and is rumored to have inspired many of H.P. Lovecraft’s Cthulu tales.
The first baseman might have remained unstoppable, were it not for an experimental government bio-terror project that sapped him of his strength. While weakened, Gehrig was tricked into entering a parallel dimension, the gate to which is in an undisclosed location, kept under constant guard by armed servicemen.
Before game time, Jeter was as humble as ever. “I’m just grateful to have had such a great career and to have this opportunity,” the shortstop said. “My only professional regret is that I was born too late to drive a stake through Gehrig’s monstrous heart.”