Just on the heels of Jorge Posada‘s retirement announcement, the 42-year-old Mariano Rivera told reporters that he will decide if he will play past 2012 by this spring training, although he would not reveal which way he was leaning, according to Marc Carig of the Newark Star-Ledger.
Rivera is on the final year of a two-year $30 million contract and based on his age, it seemed natural to expect him to retire at the end of his deal. However, Rivera doesn’t seem to be slowing down at all and retirement might not be necessary.
For the ninth season in a row, Rivera tossed at least 60 innings last season. His ERA, ERA+, K/9, and BB/9 were all better than his career averages. If he’s still pitching as well as ever, why bother retiring?
Aside from the numbers, physically he looked fine as he was able to maintain the velocity on his cutter and even saw the velocity on his fastball increase for the second year in a row. At a time when his body should be betraying him, he seems just as solid as ever.