Results tagged ‘ Mariano Rivera ’
His head bowed and his eyes welling with tears, Mariano Rivera stood in the center of the visiting clubhouse at Kauffman Stadium tonight and said that he does not know if he will pitch in the Major Leagues again.
“At this point, I don’t know,” Rivera said, repeating softly, “At this point, I don’t know. I have to face this first.”
Rivera has been diagnosed with a torn anterior cruciate ligament in his right knee, suffered while chasing a batting practice fly ball near the center field wall this evening in Kansas City.
The torn ACL was diagnosed by the Royals’ team physicians after an MRI at an area hospital tonight. He will be evaluated by the Yankees’ team physicians in New York, but the club is not expecting a miracle — his season is almost certainly over.
Rivera acknowledged that his stellar, Hall of Fame caliber career may have also ended tonight on the warning track in Kansas City, playfully lunging for a line drive as he has done countless times before.
“If I had to do it over again, I would do it over again,” Rivera said. “No hesitation. There’s reasons why it happens. You have to take it the way it is and fight through it. Now we just have to fight.”
Here is video of Rivera’s postgame press conference: Click here.
And here is reaction from his teammates:
KANSAS CITY — Yankees closer Mariano Rivera was carted off the field at Kauffman Stadium on Thursday after appearing to suffer a right knee injury shagging fly balls during batting practice.
The Yankees were hitting on the diamond just after 7 p.m. ET as Rivera raced back, reaching up for a fly ball. His right knee buckled near the warning track and he crumpled to the ground near the fence, rubbing his knee immediately in pain.
Teammates and coaches crowded around in concern as Rivera received attention in the outfield. Manager Joe Girardi was among those watching the all-time saves leader be propped onto the back of a flatbed truck and driven around the warning track.
Head athletic trainer Steve Donohue was riding with Rivera, who was gingerly helped into the clubhouse and did not appear able to put pressure on his injured leg.
No further information was immediately available about Rivera’s injury. Rivera regularly shags fly balls in center field during batting practice and has spoken about hoping to play the position in a game before he retires.
One of the treats of getting to Yankee Stadium early in the afternoon on a game day is to watch Mariano Rivera patrol center field during batting practice, gracefully making sure everything hit in his general direction doesn’t hit the turf.
Had things gone differently in his life, there’s really no reason to doubt that Rivera could have played a different position instead of becoming the game’s all-time saves leader. The Yankees wouldn’t change a thing, but Rivera still dreams of playing center field in a Major League game.
“You know what, I want to. I want to talk to that man over there,” Rivera said, nodding toward Joe Girardi’s office at Steinbrenner Field. “I want to. I’d love to. But, again, you know, it’s not something I look at as a joke. I want to do it right.”
This isn’t the first time that Girardi has been reminded of Rivera’s desire, and he did accommodate Jorge Posada’s wishes to play second base last August. But granting Rivera’s wish creates a great risk for Girardi, who’d be holding his breath every second his closer spends out there.
There’s no perfect time to do it, unless it’s clear the Yankees are going to miss the playoffs (think 2008) and Rivera has already announced his retirement. Even if they’ve already clinched a playoff spot in September, they’d still need Rivera for the World Series run, and losing him would be catastrophic to their postseason chances.
Still, Girardi hinted that if 2012 is going to be Rivera’s final season, he might be inclined to roll the dice.
“He’d have to share his plans with me to be in that mix,” Girardi said. “I wonder if he’s going to come stand next to me for two innings like Jorgie did, in my ear. That bullpen phone will be ringing a lot in the bullpen: ‘It’s Mo again.’”
Rivera would never take matters into his own hands, but Girardi admitted that if Rivera raced to center field and told Curtis Granderson to hit the showers, there wouldn’t be a whole lot the Yankees could do about it.
“What if he was to run out there and say, ‘You’re out?’” Girardi said. “What are you going to say to him?”
Rivera said he would be fine with playing as little as one pitch in center field; really, he just wants to check that box on a list that has seen him accomplish almost everything else he dreamed of in the game.
“Hopefully. Hopefully,” Rivera said. “If not, I’m OK.”
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Mariano Rivera just spent about nine minutes talking to the media at Steinbrenner Field, saying that he has made a decision about whether or not he will continue to pitch in 2013.
Rivera danced around it as much as he could, saying several times he wouldn’t reveal the decision, but it was impossible not to come away from that chat thinking that Rivera has already decided 2012 will be his final season.
In fairness, Rivera has hinted at retirement before, but he said that nothing – “Even if I save 90 games. Even if they want to pay as much money as they want to,” he said at one point — can change this particular decision. So what else could it be?
“How many times have I told you guys that this is my last year?” Rivera said. “Seven, eight years? I keep telling guys, after this year, I’m not going to play [any] more. Then there it is, I play two more years, a contract for three more years. Then another three more years. Yes, I have. … But this one is different. This is it. This one is my decision. When I let you guys know what it is, you guys will know.”
Rivera was asked if he sees himself staying in baseball after he does retire. He said that he does, but not at the big league level – he’d prefer to be in the Minor Leagues working with younger players. And managing? That’s completely out, he said.
“No, no, no,” Rivera said. “If I wanted to be a manager, I’d continue playing until I can’t [any] more. Because you have to do the same things, traveling and traveling, doing all that stuff. I’d have to come to Spring Training. No, no managing. That’s out.”
If you ask Jorge Posada, the answer is the 42-year-old Rivera, who might have shared a little inside information with his former batterymate.
“Mariano said this is it,” Posada said. “He said he has one more year, but Derek said he’s got like three more to go.”
Rivera is entering the final year of a two-year, $30 million contract, while Jeter’s commitment to the Yankees runs through 2014. But Posada quickly clarified that he doesn’t actually believe baseball’s all-time saves leader will hang it up after ’12.
“I don’t think so, especially the way he keeps playing,” Posada said.
There was no sale on a Rivera retirement for Jeter, either, as the captain quipped, “Mo is going to be here longer than all of us.”
Rivera – who attended the press conference along with current teammates Jeter and CC Sabathia – said that Posada’s announcement did not make him consider his own future.
“I don’t think about it right now, but the time will come for me, when I’ll have to just admit it and hang (up) the glove and the uniform and move on,” Rivera said. “So we all go through that.”
Rivera has spoken previously about how difficult the demands of life on the road away from his family have become; last spring, Rivera arrived at camp in Tampa, Fla. and said that his 8-year-old son Jaziel almost did not let him go.
Rivera said that he expects, just as Posada did and Andy Pettitte a year prior, that he will be at peace with his final decision when the time is right.
“[It's] the same thing; just knowing that it’s time to go,” Rivera said. “You just have to accept that. I mean, I love the game and I have the passion for the game, but when the time comes and you have to go, you have to go.”
Joe Girardi chatted over the weekend with Nick Friedell of ESPNChicago.com, and the Yankees manager — while taking in some Michigan St.-Northwestern football — said that he hasn’t received any indication that 2012 will be Mariano Rivera’s final season.
“No, not necessarily,” Girardi told the Web site. “I think Mo takes it year by year and, depending on how he does, that will determine when it’s time for him to retire.”
Rivera will turn 42 tomorrow and, as he seems to every time there’s a contract in his future, has been rather non-committal about pitching beyond its 2012 expiration.
Girardi also chatted about some Chicago-related topics, including his satisfaction in New York, Dale Sveum’s chances in the Cubs managerial chair and Theo Epstein’s arrival in the Windy City.
Mariano Rivera dropped some unexpected news yesterday, telling reporters at a charity event in New Rochelle, N.Y. that he may need surgery on his vocal cords. The Yankees closer has been bothered by a raspy voice for about a month.
“Every time I talk, it gets worse and worse,” Rivera said, according to the New York Daily News. “I thought it was a little simple thing and I went to the doctor and she said they might have to do something. I think they have to scrape them.”
While Rivera said that there’s no simple procedure when it comes to surgery, the Yankees can be pleased that at least the problem isn’t with Rivera’s right arm. He also wouldn’t tip his hand as far as what he’s thinking about beyond 2012, as Rivera enters the final season of a two-year, $30 million deal.
Also in Hot Stove news…
- Hitting coach Kevin Long thinks a rested Alex Rodriguez can return to form in 2012, according to the Bergen Record.
TORONTO — Will Canada see history? Well, there’s at least a chance. Joe Girardi was asked pregame today if there was any way he’d put somebody else in if there’s a save situation so that Mariano Rivera can get the saves record at Yankee Stadium (where the Yanks begin an eight-game homestand Monday). The answer was what you’d expect: Not a chance.
Girardi did nail down his rotation for early next week: Ivan Nova will pitch on Tuesday, CC Sabathia and Phil Hughes will start Wednesday’s doubleheader (not sure what order yet) and Bartolo Colon will go on Thursday. As for the lineup? Joe wants to give some guys a little rest.
“The guys have been going so hard, I figured we have an important 10 days coming up, try to give them a little bit of a blow,” Girardi said. “[Curtis Granderson] and [Derek Jeter] have really struggled against [Brandon] Morrow in their career, and I just thought today would be the day.”
Without further ado …
Brett Gardner, LF
Eduardo Nunez, 2B
Robinson Cano, DH
Alex Rodriguez 3B
Nick Swisher, RF
Eric Chavez, 1B
Russell Martin, C
Chris Dickerson, LF
Ramiro Pena, SS
Pitching: RH Freddy Garcia (11-7, 3.71 ERA)
BLUE JAYS (76-75)
Mike McCoy, SS
Eric Thames, LF
Jose Bautista, RF
Adam Lind, DH
Edwin Encarnacion, 1B
Kelly Johnson, 2B
Brett Lawrie, 3B
Colby Rasmus, CF
J.P. Arencibia, C
Pitching: Morrow (9-11, 5.23 ERA)
Some links from Saturday …
* Yanks win, Mo ties the save record, A-Rod goes deep, Grandy gets to 40
* Rivera one away from saves record
* Yankees Notebook, on A-Rod, Hughes, CC, Posada, etc.
* Mo can set record as Yanks try to lower number
All this talk about Mariano Rivera got me wondering — he’s always said that he would love to play center field in a game, whether it’s for one inning, a batter, whatever.
Today at Safeco Field, Joe Girardi laughed at the topic and acknowledged that seeing No. 42 in center field someday is actually a possibility.
“I’ll think about that when he tells me that he’s near the end,” Girardi said. “It’s something I would definitely think about. That’ll get me in trouble.”
Of course, with concerns about injuries, there’s really no perfect time to do such a thing. Even if the Yankees clinch the division and it were Rivera’s final season, you’d still want to keep him healthy for the postseason. It might take a 2008-esque playoff miss to make it happen.
Then again, Girardi did put Jorge Posada at second base this year without incident. Rivera shags fly balls in center field every day during batting practice and the Yankees say – without a hint of humor – that he’s one of the best athletes out there.
“Maybe I’d try to do it for one hitter; a guy that hits ground balls or strikes out,” Girardi said. “And there would be nobody on base where he’d make a throw.”
Mariano Rivera was just about as angry as I’ve ever seen him after tonight’s game, saying that the umpires’ ruling on Billy Butler’s third-inning solo homer cost the Yankees the game.
“What I saw wasn’t what they saw,” Rivera said. “Obviously, given the other team, they saw the same thing. What I saw wasn’t that the ball hit the back wall or something like that. It came down flat on the edge of the corner and ricocheted back out.
“It didn’t hit the wall. But nobody know’s what’s the rule. I assume that’s still in play, everything. That you need to clear the fence to hit a home run. To me, matter of fact, the ball never hit the back wall. That’s why they assumed it hit it, and they called a home run. But what I saw, it wasn’t.”
Rivera said that the fact that Butler was spotted in the dugout holding his helmet, as though he was ready to go back to second base, was evidence the call was muffed.
“I mean, that cost us the game. Tie game, you know?” Rivera said. “I understand we’re human, but come on. You have replays, and get the call wrong? That’s unacceptable.”