New York Yankees legend Derek Jeter has managed to stay out of the papers for anything related to his personal life or his business on the field. Sure, there was talk of gift baskets and stuff, but that was after four World Cups.
One story that swirled around the Yankees clubhouse in the 2000s was that the gold bullpen had broken a slump. Slugger Jason Giambi admitted it in 2008, saying he wore it under his uniform pants to ward off cold streaks. Giambi did it not only with the Yankees, but also for the Cleveland Indians and Colorado Rockies when he joined those clubs.
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Giambi told the New York Daily News at the time that Jeter, Bernie Williams, Johnny Damon, Robin Ventura and Robinson Cano have all worn it and come out of slumps.
The ‘Captain’ was revealed to be wearing it on Wednesday night when he appeared on ‘The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon’. During one of the segments, Jeter said he turned to the haircut in hopes of getting out of the “worst offensive stretch of my career.”
In 2004, Jeter was 0-for-32, and he explained that he was forced to wear the haircut.
“In 2004, I went through the worst offensive stretch of my career,” Jeter said. “Every day I would come in and he would point to the hairstyle.”
On April 29, 2004, Jeter snapped a home run against Oakland Athletics starter Barry Zito. The Yankees won 7-5.
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Giambi recalled in a 2015 episode of The Dan Le Batard Show with Stugotz that the haircut worked.
“The golden hairdo is legendary. It never got a hit,” he said when asked about the Jeter connections. “Well, that’s just, you know, that was his first fall. I don’t think the guy has ever had a slump in his career. He is incredible. You know, the golden hairdo, he had to get out of it.
“I never gave it to anyone. Sometimes I put it in their closet. Sometimes I started mentioning that I would give you a gold ring if you didn’t get out of this slump. Sometimes I broke it because they didn’t want to wear the gold cloak. And most of the time it ended up in their closet. And anyone who wore it was a hit.
“I just know the first pitch, the home run and the touchdown is over.”
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The legend lives on.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.