We all remember where we were and what we were doing on the morning of September 11th 2001. Being 5 at the time, I was pretty oblivious to what was going on that day, but I still remember the things I thought and did that day just like every other American, that remembers what happened. In a time of sadness, anger and mourn, the one thing Americans so desperately needed was Hope. Ever since they have been created, sports have been to some a world of freedom and fun. Where the only thing that matters is if their team won or lost that day, no matter the sport. Americans, who undoubtedly love their sports more than anyone else in the world, needed some type of normalcy to revert back too. Sports, for us, was there.
Sports during that time, most notably Baseball was a source of comfort for many looking for a way to, for just a moment, get away from it all. America’s pastime came through. All of a sudden the New York Yankees, the most hated team in baseball maybe in sports, became America’s team for one playoff run. The run revitalized a city that was ready to get back on their feet, and brush the dust of their chest. New Yorker’s are known as people who never say die and have a burning spirit inside them. No better person to represent them, than the Captain, Derek Jeter. It started with the legendary “flip” play. In the 2001 ALDS Bottom 7th a ball hit down the right field line, Giambi of the A’s rounding second, Jeter notices that the throw would not make it in time to get Giambi out. So going way out of position Jeter rounds to the first baseline cuts off the throw and flips it to catcher Jorge Posada and get Giambi out by inches. One of the greatest plays in MLB history, Jeter and the Yanks would make it to the 2001 World Series. After getting down to the Diamondbacks 2 games to none, the Yanks were back at home, in New York and once again Jeter shined. Game 4 was tied 3 a piece in the bottom of the 10th with 2 outs, Jeter came up and the clock struck midnight. November 1st 2001. After a classic long a bat he is so well-known for, Jeter takes a pitch into the rightfield stands winning the game. Earning him the nickname, Mr. November. But more importantly it showed the persistence of the Yanks, as well as New Yorker’s. In a beautiful way, Sports showed New York and America, that we have been down before as a country, but we have proven that we can get back up because it is our nature, it is who we are as Americans.
Ever since that fateful day, we have become more patriotic through sports. My high school football fan section chants “U-S-A!, U-S-A!” every time after the national anthem. America as a whole has taken more pride in the Olympics and root harder for the men and women that represent us as a nation through athletics, as well as in the Armed Forces. 11 years after 9/11 we still take the time to remember what happened, but we also remember how sports united us as one and showed us how to get back up and keep moving forward as the United States of America.
Dedicated to the men and women that serve our country, inside and out. Thank you.