The rumors were true. Mariano Rivera, the Yankees ace in the bullpen for the past 18 years, officially announced that he will retire after the 2013 season during a press conference this morning.
“It’s official now,” Rivera said. “After this year, I will be retiring.”
“The time is almost ending,” he added. “The little gas that I have left, I’m going to give everything for this year. I’ll empty everything There’s nothing left. I did everything and I’m proud of it. That’s why.”
“I have a few bullets left and I’m gonna use them well this year,” Rivera said. “That’s what I have. I know after this year you’re not gonna see me on the field unless it’s doing something else – not playing baseball.”
Yankees fans should consider themselves lucky that Rivera is even giving it one last year. He’s 43 and he’s coming off of major knee surgery. For a player who has built his legacy on being unbelievably consistent, coming off major surgery at his age is a huge question mark and it wouldn’t have been hard to blame him if he hung it up after last season.
But we are indeed lucky so we will get to watch him don the Pinstripes for his 19th season. He’ll extend his own phenomenal saves record which currently sits at 608. He’ll throw that cutter that nobody has quite mastered the way he has. He’ll execute his perfect mechanics and walk off the field without a single fist pump just the dignity of a sure fire first ballot Hall of Famer that he is.
We’re never going to see another one like him. He’s a freak. Some kind of high powered super human. Enjoy him while you still can and if you’ve never seen him in person, you’d better be getting yourself to Yankee Stadium this season.
• Long time opponent, Ichiro Suzuki, said, “When you think about the Yankees, having Derek Jeter at shortstop and Mariano Rivera closing games, I really thought when I would go to the Yankees that was like a special moment.”
• Derek Jeter will be back in the lineup today as the DH.
• Rawlings is trying to improve the legitimacy of the Gold Glove Awards by providing managers with sabremetric stats when they vote at the end of the year.