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Yankees’ Rivera: ‘Good Chance’ I’d Be Retired Had I Pitched In Playoffs

(credit: J. Meric/Getty Images)

(credit: J. Meric/Getty Images)

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NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – Mariano Rivera wasn’t able to return from a torn ACL in time for the 2012 playoffs.

But what if he had made it back? Well, the Yankees’ legendary closer told ESPN’s Buster Olney there’s “a good chance” he would have retired after the season.

Instead of enjoying his first spring of retirement, Rivera is sweating out his bullpen sessions in Tampa, where he’s expected to announce his intentions for 2014 sometime before Opening Day.

Rivera may have tipped his hand with the remark, though the 43-year-old insisted last year’s mindset “has no impact on what I do,” according to the New York Post.

Rivera, who threw out the first pitch before Game 3 of the ALDS, said he wasn’t close at all to returning for October baseball.

“Not close — they shut me down early,” he told the Post.

Rivera, baseball’s all-time saves leader, had surgery in June to repair a torn ACL in his right knee. His 2012 season ended on May 3 in Kansas City, when the 43-year-old went down in a heap while shagging fly balls in Kansas City.

Rivera told reporters last week that he has made a decision on whether he’ll retire at the end of the season, but he’s not telling — yet. He said there would “definitely” be an announcement before the start of the season.

The Yankees open at home against the Boston Red Sox on April 1.

“Don’t worry, the time will come,” Rivera said last week. “Another day or a week, it won’t hurt.”

What’s your gut say? Will Mo retire after the season? Be heard in the comments…