Christian Lopez, the Yankees fan who caught Derek Jeter's 3,000th hit and then exchanged the ball for tickets and memorabilia, says he has been contacted by New York general manager Brian Cashman about a further deal involving the Yankee shortstop.
"Brian called me today at work and asked if I'd be interested in taking Jeter off his hands," said Lopez. "He said I could keep all the stuff I got for the Jeter ball, only now I'd get Derek, too, in exchange for … well, he said anything I wanted to give. A baseball, my recycling, an old rug, whatever."
Cashman confirmed that he has been in contact with Lopez.
"My job is to always look for ways to improve this team," said Cashman. "Milestones or not, the fact is that Derek is batting .270, has three home runs, a .683 OPS and has limited range and we're trying to win a World Series. So this big Jeter fan comes along and I thought he might be open to taking Derek off our hands."
Lopez said he appreciates the offer, but isn't sure he can make it work.
"I live in a one-bedroom apartment," he said. "I don't want to give up my bed, but I don't want a Yankees legend to sleep on my old couch or on the floor either. Plus, what will he eat? I'm not a big cook. My fridge is mainly milk for cereal, some beer and old pizza boxes. It would be a big lifestyle change."
Perhaps the biggest impediment to Lopez accepting a trade for Jeter is that he would be taking on the bulk of the shortstop's remaining 3-year, $51 million contract.
"I work at a cell phone kiosk at the mall," said Lopez. "Based on commissions, I'd have to sell 44,314 cell phones a day for three years to make it work. That would be tough. My best day ever so far is nine sales."
Cashman says the Yankees would be willing to pick up part of Jeter's salary, provided Lopez also takes A.J. Burnett.
"Not a chance I would even consider that," says Lopez. "I'm a big Yankees fan, but even I have my limits."