The Best of the Captain

 

If you watched anything having anything to do with baseball today, you're probably well aware that the New York Yankees retired the legendary Derek Jeter's #2 jersey this afternoon. Yankee fan or not, you have to appreciate what the guy did for the game -- we certainly do! In fact, Jeter was so good, we could only find one major flaw (and we looked awfully hard): Despite becoming the face of the Big Apple, he never wore a Buckler.

But let's face it: The guy's a true pro, one of the best ever, when it comes to all things media-related. In that spirit, we now present Buckler's countdown of the three best Derek Jeter commercials of all time. Whether or not you agree with our choices, you're likely to get at least a few goosebumps from one or more of these classic spots. (Note: These choices do not represent any sort of commentary -- positive or negative -- on any of the brands behind the ads. We just really love how they honored Mr. November.)

3. My Way (Gatorade)

We're suckers for Sinatra, but the beauty of this ad is in the incredible authenticity of DJ's interactions with the New Yorkers he meets on his impromptu walk to the yard. We've probably all dreamed at one time or another of bumping into our hero on the street, but the lucky fans in this commercial actually lived it.

2. The 2s Come Down (Budweiser)

Bud's recent acknowledgement of the retirement of 2 features arguably the most cleverly wrought "plot" line on our list, as gas stations and street signs alike pull down the sacred numeral out of respect for Mr. Jeter. It's another great nod to the city itself -- and to the lengths to which its inhabitants will go to celebrate their hero. A single digit never looked so cool.

1. A Tip of the Cap (Nike)

Forget goosebumps; this one gives us chills. When Spike Lee, Billy Crystal, Phil Jackson, Tiger, and -- most chill-inducing of all -- MJ himself all tip their respective caps to you and your career, well, you're a legend in rare company, simple as that. Congrats, Derek, and in the words of Jimmy Fallon: "Unbelievable!"

Oh, and while you're here, don't forget to watch this one (not a commercial, but maybe the best, most moving clip of them all):

 
Andrew Bennett