Posted July 15, 2014 09:42 pm

All-Stars and Derek Jeter

Last year, it was goodbye to the "Sandman," Mariano Rivera.

This year, it was farewell to "The Captain," Derek Jeter.

A generation of great Yankees is departing the stage.

The Major League All-Star game has meaning. It determines the home team in the World Series, won the last five years by the home team.

An exhibition game in which it is generally understood everybody plays shouldn't be that important. A player from a team with no chance at the Series could determine the dynamic.

Silly, but that's how baseball does it. What it does well is have an All-Star game that is played exactly like a regular-season game, including a premium on defense and actually great defensive plays.

It's also a great stage for a farewell to an icon, especially giving him the opportunity to be saluted by players, fans and managers of all the teams.

Derek Jeter is not "Forever Young."

But many will remember him that way — or wish he was.