Derek Jeter of the Yankees waits to bat in the...

Derek Jeter of the Yankees waits to bat in the third inning against the Texas Rangers at Yankee Stadium on Monday, July 21, 2014. Credit: Jim McIsaac

Flash back to the late '90s, when the Yankees were in the midst of a dynasty and the iPod was not yet invented.

Derek Jeter, then in his mid-20s, wanted some new walk-up songs for his at-bats. So he asked a friend to put together a CD for him.

That friend was Puff Daddy.

"Puffy used to give me songs before they even came out so I could use them when I walked up to the plate," Jeter said.

When you're the face of the Yankees -- and when you've dated Mariah Carey -- you're going to have connections in the music industry.

For his very first at-bat at Yankee Stadium, in June of 1995, Jeter requested the song "This Is How We Do It" by Montell Jordan. Now 40, Jeter strides to the plate to "Hypnotize" by Notorious B.I.G.

"I just pick something that I like the beat to," Jeter said. "When I was younger I was into it a lot more. Now a little less time and effort goes into it. I just go old school."

Ever wonder which songs Yankees legends would have used if walk-up music existed back then? Imagine Babe Ruth calling his shot with Al Jolson playing in the background? Or Roger Maris, looking for his 61st home run, walking to the plate to the sound of Elvis Presley?

Yogi Berra, 89, found walk-up music to be an odd concept when asked earlier this week. But he said he would have used the jazz classic, "Take the A Train" by Duke Ellington and Count Basie.

Wright choice

David Wright stood at his locker trying to recall the song the Mets selected for his first at-bat at Shea Stadium. To the best of his recollection, it was to a song by a boy band from the '80s.

" 'The Right Stuff' by New Kids on the Block," he said. "Just because of the play on words with my last name."

Was "Right Now" by Van Halen not available?

Wright, who has "I Got 5 On It" by Luniz but did use New Kids on the Block again earlier this season, often lets his brothers pick his songs. He held a vote on in 2007 to allow fans to select his music.

"It's more about what will make me chuckle," Wright said. "A lot of guys take it very seriously and spend hours upon hours thinking about it. You can tell a lot about a person by what music they come out to."

Brett Gardner goes with Luke Bryan's "Muckalee Creek Water," which reminds him of his hometown in South Carolina.

"I just want something that clears my mind and puts me in a good place," he said. "Not everyone is a country music fan. Hopefully it doesn't put everybody to sleep."

Curtis Granderson has a perfect seasonal anthem in "Summertime" by DJ Jazzy Jeff and The Fresh Prince.

"You need something that no one else is using," he said. "And something that is clean enough to play around audiences."

The rockers in town are Lucas Duda, with "All Along the Watchtower" by Jimi Hendrix, and Mark Teixeira, with "I Wanna Rock" by Twisted Sister.

Anthony Recker wants originality, so he incorporates the theme song from "The Last of the Mohicans."

Brian Roberts uses "Don't Waste Your Life" by Lecrae, a Christian rapper, because of the message it delivers.

Eric Young Jr. uses "Young Forever" by Jay Z for obvious reasons. Rod Stewart's "Forever Young" is still available if Chris Young is interested.

Carlos Beltran let his wife pick his song, "Echa Pa'lla" by Pitbull.

Daniel Murphy's selection of "I'm Shipping Up to Boston" by the Dropkick Murphys has nothing to do with his last name. He simply likes the beat. He also has two songs by Lecrae, and "The Reason" by Lacey Sturm, for religious purposes.

"Those three," Murphy said, "are a quick 20 seconds to talk about what Jesus Christ has done in my life."

Brian McCann comes out to the sound of silence. No, not the classic Simon and Garfunkel song that goes by that title. Actual silence.

"I got sick of my walk-up song and decided not to have one," said McCann, whose first half slump may have had something to do with that.


Michael Luzzi grabbed his CD case and walked into Yankee Stadium, where he worked a second job as a technician.

During the 1998 World Series, Yankees ownership was fascinated by the crowd's reaction to Padres' closer Trevor Hoffman emerging from the bullpen to "Hells Bells" by AC/DC. They wanted to create the same atmosphere with a song for Mariano Rivera.

A scoreboard director nearly settled on "Paradise City" by Guns N' Roses. Luzzi continued to search.

"It was the old CD case where everything was in sleeves," Luzzi said. "I was flipping through the pages and I'm like, 'Oh, try this.' "

He took out his Metallica CD. From that game on, "Enter Sandman" was played for every Rivera entrance.

"There were a lot of people looking for songs," said Luzzi, now a senior vice president at Turner Broadcasting. "I just happened to be the guy in the group that pulled the one that stuck."

When David Robertson succeeded Rivera as closer this season, he had a tough act to follow, both statistically and musically. Especially because he didn't have a cutter or an iTunes account. Robertson stuck with "Sweet Home Alabama" by Lynyrd Skynyrd.

"It reminds me of where I came from," he said, "and what I went through to get here."

Zack Wheeler recently felt that it was time to change his warm-up music. So he tracked down a scoreboard employee and requested "Purple Haze" by Hendrix.

"I like something that pumps me up," he said. "Some guys, they like it to settle them down, but I like it to get me going."

A few Yankees were asked which teammate had the strangest music. The choice was unanimous: Masahiro Tanaka, who uses "My Dear Fellow."

A popular Japanese band called Momoiro Clover Z -- Tanaka's interpreter described the band as the Spice Girls of Japan -- actually created the song for Tanaka to use. It made its worldwide debut during his first start at Yankee Stadium.

Jeter was coming off the disabled list last season and decided to relay a message to fans through his walk-up song.

He used Eminem's "Square Dance," which opens with the lyric, "People! It feels so good to be back!"

Shortly after, Jeter appeared on "Late Night with Jimmy Fallon" and did a skit about walk-up music. They made a Derek Jeter anthem and Fallon asked him to use it for an actual at-bat. He did.

Some Yankees and Mets were asked what Jeter should use for his last at-bat ever at Yankee Stadium this fall.

"He should use the first song he ever used," Kelly Johnson said.

"Simply the Best," Wright suggested.

Perhaps he shouldn't use a song at all. This way the recording of the late Bob Sheppard's voice can introduce Jeter one final time, free of background music.

The song likely won't be heard over the cheering anyway.

"We have quite some time before that happens," Jeter said. "Wait and see."

Maybe he's planning to use those music connections of his again.

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