When the New York Yankees season ends we will also witness the end of an amazing career.
Mariano “Mo” Rivera aka The Sandman has spent his entire major league career with the New York Yankees. The soon to be 44 year old pitcher has been a force to be reckoned with in this league ever since his arrival back in 1995.
The other day against the Chicago White Sox he recorded his 40th save of the season for the ninth time in his career, tying Trevor Hoffman for most of all-time. As a Chicago Cubs fan I always enjoyed watching Mariano close out ball games.
Earlier this year, Rivera passed Hoffman for the lead in 30 save seasons with 15. Next couple guys on the list are Lee Smith with 10 and Billy Wagner with nine. When it comes to active pitchers, Joe Nathan stands at eight and Jonathan Papelbon sits at seven.
Mo and Eric Gagne are the only relievers with a pair of 50 save seasons.
It’s obvious when Mariano Rivera calls it quits, Yankees games won’t be the same. Sure they may have the Captain Derek Jeter for awhile, but he’s close to exiting the game himself.
While Mariano is eyeing retirement, manager Joe Girardi wants Rivera to return. Who doesn’t?
“I already told you guys. I don’t want to come back like that again. I made my decision. They can do whatever they want. That’s fine. I don’t tell (Girardi) what to do. But on my behalf, I already made my decision in spring training.” Mariano Rivera told the New York Daily News.
Atlanta Falcons tight end Tony Gonzalez was pretty much in the same situation. He was about 90 percent sure he was going to retire, even talked about it during the regular season. But after losing in the playoffs against the San Francisco 49ers, Gonzalez’s mindset changed.
Now the future hall of fame tight end is suiting up for one more season with the Falcons.
Could Mariano Rivera do the same thing? A player is never really finished, I mean look at guys like Brett Favre. Either way I expect fans across the globe to applaud Rivera when he makes his final outing of his career.
Rivera’s career numbers currently stand at 648 saves with a 2.21 ERA and 1,161 strike outs on a 80-60 win/loss record. With a little under a month left to go in the season, those numbers are sure to increase.
There will never be another Mariano Rivera. That’s coming from a Chicago Cubs fan.