Yankees manager Joe Girardi says legendary closer Mariano Rivera can play center field in Houston if he wants to.
I had just come from the clubhouse, along with a throng of reporters, swarming and barking at him like hyenas. Everyone wants to be like him. Everyone wants to be him. Everyone wants a piece of his peace.
Rivera put his head on Andy Pettitte’s right shoulder and sobbed. The end had arrived, at least for his career in the Yankees’ home pinstripes.
Despite baseball’s highest opening-day payroll at $230 million, the Yankees failed to claim one of the 10 playoff berths. “It hurts,” manager Joe Girardi said after it was over.
Haters have waited a decade for the day to come, when the money, the love, and the luck run dry on the Yankees. The rest have wrestled with the pristine precedent, whether this is finally 1965 redux.
Looking ahead with the realization that Rivera and Pettitte will be gone, that other key players are well past their primes and that the team will be mired in medical and/or legal issues, it brings a certain amount of trepidation for Bombers fans.
Andy Pettitte and Mariano Rivera deserved a storybook ending Sunday, but things do happen in this game. Still, it was quite a day at the Stadium.
The Yankees’ retiring closer is being honored before the game on “Mariano Rivera Day,” creating an energy and excitement among fans at Yankee Stadium.
New York Yankees saw their AL wild-card hopes dim Sunday with a crushing 2-1 loss to the San Francisco Giants.
Barring a run to the postseason, Andy Pettitte takes the mound for the final time at home Sunday when the Yankees look to complete a three-game sweep of the Giants. Mo Rivera will be honored before the game.
“I’ve reached the point where I know that I’ve left everything I have out there on that field,” Pettitte said in a statement. “The time is right. I’ve exhausted myself, mentally and physically, and that’s exactly how I want to leave this game.”
Pedro Martinez was dominant. Roger Clemens was the most valuable pitcher. Greg Maddux was brilliant. Randy Johnson was overwhelming. Mike Mussina was underrated. Andy Pettitte? He was a winner.
Andy Pettitte, the most decorated, pinstriped pitcher since Whitey Ford, is inching toward the twilight, one gutty cutter at a time. His humble, aw-shucks refrain is so charming and understated that we don’t even acknowledge him.
Andy Pettitte is frustrated, Joe Girardi is worried and the Yankees need to snap their losing streak in the worst way. The Bombers might not be in must-win territory just yet, but they sure are getting there in a hurry.