Mariano Rivera is already 41-years-old, an age when most players have already been retired for at least a year and is thriving through the first four games he still has a 0.00 ERA to go along with a 0.46 WHIP. At times it seems like he could have no problem pitching until he is 50, but this week he said that he will put away his glove when his contract expires after the 2012 season.
Via Buster Olney of ESPN:
“I have another year, and after that, there won’t be any more,” said Mo, who signed a two-year deal this offseason. Or course, he qualified it by saying “That’s me talking [now].”
Two things, Rivera has said this before. He’s actually said it more than once and he always qualifies it somehow. This time it was “that’s me talking now,” and other times he has used the ‘it’s in god’s hands’ line as well. So the fact that he has said this now doesn’t necessarily mean that he will retire after the 2012 season.
The thing is though that as good as Rivera is, and we all know that he is the best reliever of all time, eventually his age will catch up to him. It happens to every player no matter how good he is. That could happen this season, or it could be next. Or it could be when he is 45. There is a good chance that he won’t be able to do it in 2013 so this concern seems a bit premature now. However, if he can do it when the time comes it seems hard to imagine he will just step away.