Terry Francona spoke about the Mariano Rivera, Derek Jeter, and the rivalry with the Yankees in a Q&A with Dave Johnson of the Daily Press. It came as no surprise that he ranked Rivera as the toughest guy to face in the ninth inning or that he said the Yankees and Red Sox respected each other. The surprising part of the interview was the player he picked for this question:
Q: It’s the ninth inning, you’re up by one, and there are runners at second and third. Who’s the last guy in the league you want to see at the plate?
A: (Derek) Jeter. Definitely Jeter. He wills himself to beat you (for) all the reasons you respect him as a player. You don’t want him to have anything to do with the outcome of the game.