Results for tag: Mariano Rivera
Posted by: Jack Curry on Sep 27, 2013 at 04:24:03 PM
We all knew Mariano Rivera was going to pitch at Yankee Stadium for the final time on Thursday night. We all knew the bullpen door was going to open and Rivera was going to jog to the mound and do what he has done for almost two decades. We all knew the star of the show and we all knew what was supposed to be in the script. We had this night all figured out, right?

But there wasn't actually a script for Rivera's last appearance in pinstripes. There was emotion, an endless flow of emotion from the unforgettable pitcher, and there were tears, an abundance of tears that Rivera predicted would never appear. So, on a night where we all thought we knew what to expect, we witnessed scenes that we had never envisioned. Rivera's good-bye was riveting.

Even though we presumably knew what was about

Posted by: Jack Curry on Jul 17, 2013 at 02:06:31 PM
The memorable night was over, but Mariano Rivera wanted to revisit it. He was still wearing his Yankee uniform, still gushing about a night like no other. Rivera wanted to go back on the field, wanted to climb back on the mound and wanted to feel what it was like to be universally adored. Again.

There has never been another pitcher with the distinct talents of Rivera and there aren't enough people with the gentlemanly traits of Rivera. As the 43-year old Rivera leaned against a cinderblock wall near the visiting clubhouse at CitiField, he grew emotional while discussing how both teams delayed the All-Star Game to stand and cheer for him.

"They almost made me cry," Rivera said. "Almost. It was close. It has been tremendous. I was telling them I hope this night doesn't end."

If Rivera

Posted by: Jack Curry on Mar 8, 2013 at 01:54:15 PM

TAMPA - Even from about 100 feet away, the man's confident walk looked familiar. Even in a darkened concourse outside the Yankees' clubhouse, it was easy to peek at the man's back and realize exactly who it was. There is style in everything Mariano Rivera does, even when he is walking from the clubhouse to the parking lot.

On this sunny Friday at Steinbrenner Field, Rivera's stroll was interrupted when reporters caught up to him and inquired about the press conference he is having on Saturday. Rivera, the greatest closer of all-time, is expected to announce that he is retiring after the 2013 season. But, naturally, Rivera wasn't ready to disclose that one day early.

"I told you guys that I would talk one day," Rivera said. "Tomorrow is the day."

Tomorrow is the day the Yankees knew would eventually

Posted by: Jack Curry on Mar 7, 2013 at 03:45:57 PM

TAMPA - We all knew this day was coming. Someday soon, Mariano Rivera would sit down, thank everyone for attending his news conference and then tell the world he wasn't planning to play baseball anymore. When Rivera first arrived for Spring Training with the Yankees last month, he strongly hinted that 2013 would be his final season. Now he is expected to finally confirm that decision.

After ESPN's Buster Olney tweeted that Rivera could announce his retirement as early as Saturday, Joel Sherman of The New York Posttweeted that Rivera would have a news conference at 10 a.m. on Saturday. While Rivera's retirement announcement is probable, one source added that there was a remote chance that Rivera could change his mind.

Rivera has a rarified place in baseball history. He is the greatest

Posted by: Jack Curry on Feb 13, 2013 at 03:22:48 PM

TAMPA, Fla. – Mariano Rivera never throws on the first day of workouts for pitchers and catchers, a fact that he mentioned with a sly smile. But Rivera threw on Wednesday, smoothly navigating through a 25-pitch bullpen session. It was the most scrutinized session in the state with about 40 reporters watching every pitch that Rivera uncorked.

When it was over, Rivera exhaled. So did the Yankees. It was the first step in a process that the Yankees hope will end with Rivera returning to his dominant form as a closer. Rivera, who wore a light-weight brace on his right knee, said that it felt "wonderful to be out there again." For the Yankees, the feeling was mutual.

It was only one bullpen session, only 25 pitches to Minor League catcher J.R. Murphy, but seeing a healthy Rivera on the

Posted by: Jack Curry on May 10, 2012 at 12:24:53 PM

Fifteen years later, the vision of a spooked Mariano Rivera is still embedded in my cranium. One week into the 1997 season, Rivera surrendered a 464-foot homer to Mark McGwire and blew his second save in four chances. Rivera was the new closer for the Yankees, but he was failing in the ninth inning.

As Rivera fielded questions about letting a 1-0 lead disappear at Yankee Stadium, his voice cracked. He searched for the proper words, but he was really searching for the right answers, too. The more Rivera spoke, the more obvious it became that he was a bewildered soul. He was the closer who wasn’t closing.

“I think I need something to get me going,” Rivera said at the time. “I think mentally to get me going I have to try to think like last year. Just think it’s

Posted by: Jack Curry on May 4, 2012 at 09:27:45 AM

Spotting Mariano Rivera during batting practice was never a chore. A Yankee hitter would blast a shot into the outfield gaps and a blur would bolt across the grass to grab it. That blur was Rivera, who shagged fly balls as part of his pregame routine. It was easy to watch Rivera glide around the outfield.

On a sobering Thursday in Kansas City, it wasn’t easy to watch Rivera in the outfield. It was awful. Awful to watch Rivera land awkwardly after leaping for a ball near the left field warning track, awful to see his face plastered with pain and awful to see him grabbing his damaged right knee. Rivera, the mightiest of closers, looked helpless.

A few hours later, a somber Rivera revealed that he had torn the ACL and meniscus in his knee, a devastating injury. As difficult as it was to

Posted by: Jack Curry on Feb 22, 2012 at 11:35:21 AM

TAMPA – As David Robertson stood on a mound here in December, the conversation switched to the possibility of him being a closer for the Yankees. Sure, Robertson said, he would love to succeed Mariano Rivera at some point, but Robertson stressed that he didn’t want Rivera to retire anytime soon.

“I don’t need to do it right away,” Robertson said. “I want Mo to hang around a few years.”

Two months later, Rivera walked into Spring Training and strongly hinted that he would retire after 2012. Rivera acknowledged that he has already decided what he will do after this season. While Rivera wouldn’t divulge his plans to reporters, he sounded like a player who was prepared to cede the ninth inning to someone else.

Someone like Robertson.

It was

Posted by: Jack Curry on Feb 20, 2012 at 05:21:34 PM

TAMPA -- The Yankees trickled into the clubhouse Monday morning like any other first workout for pitchers and catchers in any other season. There was a slimmer CC Sabathia, a leaner Phil Hughes and a more sinewy Russell Martin, their bodies telling the stories of their productive off-seasons. There were the endless hugs and handshakes, routine ways to reconnect after four months of separation.

But, as much as this opening of Spring Training felt like any other opening for the Yankees, there could be something that is very different about the next six and a half weeks. This could be the final time that Mariano Rivera, the greatest closer ever, is part of Spring Training. Rivera could be ready to retire.

During two interview sessions with reporters, Rivera hinted strongly that 2012 would

Posted by: Jack Curry on Sep 20, 2011 at 01:04:40 PM

The skinny kid in shorts and a T-shirt was watching the Yankees play an exhibition game at Fort Lauderdale Stadium in 1993. The only reason I noticed him is because he was positioned behind a fence that was alongside the Yankees’ dugout. That was a place where reporters congregated. We could peek at the game and also monitor if George Steinbrenner emerged from an office trailer that was about 100 feet away.

As the kid talked to a fan, I soon realized he was a Yankee Minor Leaguer and I became intrigued by his words. The kid explained how he had undergone right elbow surgery, how he was going to return soon and how, someday, he would pitch in the Major Leagues.

“I’ll be there,” the kid said. “You will see.”

I had no idea who this kid was. After asking