Derek Jeter met the press Monday — before playing his final series against the Tampa Bay Rays in St. Petersburg — and got a little tongue-tied when trying to come up with a reason he might miss playing at Tropicana Field.
A reporter asked the Yankees shortstop, "Is there anything you're going to miss about playing here in the Trop?"
After a pause, Jeter smiled politely and worked hard at finding fondness for the often criticized domed stadium where a lot of players don't like to play.
"Uh. What am I going to miss about playing here? They made some great, you know, this stadium, when I first came up, it was the old artificial turf and I think it's gotten better as the years have gone on and I think the amenities for the fans have gotten better," he stammered. "So I think it continues to improve.
"I'll miss getting an extra eight, nine, 10 days getting home during the course of the season. But I'll have a lot of days at home now. So let me get back to you about that."
At least he had nice things to say about the Rays franchise, the organization's focus on the fans and the extra days he gets to spend at his nearby mansion in Tampa.
As for the Trop? Not so much.