When you think of the number 2, what comes to mind? Some might immediately think of the Dodgers and their consecutive second-place finishes in the World Series in 2017 and 2018. But others, like myself, think of some of the greatest players to ever wear 2 on their jerseys. Names like the renowned manager Tommy Lasorda, a healthy SS Troy Tulowitzki in his prime, the young superstar SS Dansby Swanson, and of course, the Yankees legend and Hall of Famer Derek Jeter all come to mind.
There is one other notable player who dawns No. 2: none other than the proven cheater 3B Alex Bregman. And it is time for him to change that.
You may be asking why Bregman should change his number. According to a 2018 ABC News article, Bregman wears No. 2 because the Diamondbacks chose Swanson with their No. 1 overall pick in the 2015 MLB Draft over Bregman, who was then selected by the Houston Astros second overall. However, Bregman has stated in the past that he also wears No. 2 because of Jeter.
Although Bregman’s career numbers do tell a story of a promising young player, his legacy will be tarnished by the 2017 cheating scandal. Cheating is not something Jeter stood for, and therefore, Bregman should change his number out of respect for an MLB icon.
Let’s take a trip down memory lane. Second baseman Robinson Canó, one of the highly touted free agents of the 2012-13 offseason, left the confines of New York to join the Seattle Mariners on a 10-year, $240 million deal. Canó wore No. 24 during his entire nine-year career with the Yankees but took No. 22 when he joined Seattle. The last player to wear No. 24 for the Mariners was Hall of Fame OF Ken Griffey Jr, hence why there was some controversy over which number he should wear. OF Bryce Harper posted a comment on Twitter, which has since been deleted, addressing the number situation in Seattle. According to a Larry Brown Sports article, either Cano respected Griffey Jr. and chose a new number or the organization asked him to pick a different number.
I mention this example because although players in years past have felt obligated to change their numbers for different reasons, I want to illustrate that this controversy has happened recently — within the last decade to be exact. As a Yankee fan, I can’t speak for others of a different fan base. But Griffey Jr. is a baseball icon, just like Jeter. If Canó can change his number, after winning a World Series title he did not cheat to win, then I don’t think it is asking much for Bregman to change his number out of respect for another baseball icon — one he idolized growing up, too. Is it the end of the world if Bregman continues to wear No. 2? No. Does him changing his number wash away the black stain on his resumé? Absolutely not. But it is a start.
Bregman and the rest of the 2017 Astros have a long way to go to make up for their actions — their third baseman showing some humility for a change by making this scenario right would be a step in the right direction, though.
My name is Sebastian and I am a senior at Northern Arizona University. I am a double major in journalism and communication, along with a minor in German. I have been in various editorial positions and have contributed articles to The Lumberjack, NAU's student-run newspaper.