New York Yankees shortstop Anthony Volpe was born in 2001.
Those were highly successful times for the Yanks: they had won four World Series in a span of five years from 1996 to 2000.
Although they lost the Fall Classic in dramatic fashion in that 2001 season, Volpe grew up as a Yankees fan idolizing Derek Jeter.
As an eight-year old kid, he got to watch his favorite player win the World Series in 2009, which happens to be the last time the Yanks took the title.
He was 13 when he got Jeter’s autograph at the 2014 All-Star Game.
Look at this cool picture, as shared by Sarah Langs and others.
from the 2014 All-Star Game!!
baseball is the best!! https://t.co/azOTf15AqC
— Sarah Langs (@SlangsOnSports) March 27, 2023
A lot has happened in the nine years since that photo was taken.
He went to Delbarton School in Morristown, New Jersey, and hit .488 with seven home runs, 34 RBI, and 17 stolen bases as a senior.
After being named the 2019 New Jersey High School Player of the Year by Perfect Game, Volpe had a commitment to play college baseball at Vanderbilt University.
His favorite team came calling, though.
The Yankees took him in the first round of the 2019 MLB Draft, and he agreed to forgo his commitment to Vanderbilt and sign with his dream team.
Now, after dominating the minors in 2021 and 2022 (he hit 21 homers and stole 50 bases last year), he won the shortstop competition in the Yankees’ camp and will get to follow Jeter’s footsteps.
He will become the Yankees’ youngest player to make his MLB debut on Opening Day since…Derek Jeter.
Baseball is truly, like Langs says, the best.