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Handed the Yankees' shortstop job to start the 1996 season, Jeter silenced front-office doubts about his readiness on Opening Day in Cleveland. In his second at-bat of the season, he led off the top of the fifth by pulling a solo home run over Jacobs Field's leftfield wall. Jeter also impressed in the field as the Yankees won, 7-1. He then went 3-for-3 with a walk and a stolen base the next day. By season's end, he was the unanimous choice for AL Rookie of the Year.

Text: Cliff Corcoran, SI.com
Photo: David Liam Kyle/SI

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