Prior to that both starting pitchers were on their game. CC Sabathia was great through seven innings and only surrendered one run. He was helped by some huge double plays to get him out of potential danger. Tim Linceum matched him until the eighth. Pablo Sandoval committed a huge error on a potential double play ball and Linceum got wild loading the bases. It all combined to set up A-Rod for the dramatic home run and give the Yankees a 5-1 lead.
David Robertson would get through the eighth and Mo was summoned to close the door.
It was not a save situation but Mo handled it with ease. He struck out Hunter Pence looking for the first out. He then threw a nasty cutter to Pablo Sandoval which jammed him and he hit a weak pop up to Cano for the second out. Hector Sanchez then grounded to first and Mo covered for the out to end the game.
Rivera lowered his 2013 season ERA to 2.21.
The Yankees still have a faint pulse in the Wild Care race as they moved to within 3 games.
New York Daily News explains how Metallica's "Enter Sandman" became the entrance music for Mariano Rivera. In 1999, the scoreboard staff began to experiment with different songs, in search of a signature song for the closer. Yankee Stadium employee Mike Luzzi played "Enter Sandman" one day and it stuck.
Matt Snyder of CBS' Eye on Baseball reports that Yankee players will wear a special Mariano Rivera patch on their hats on Sunday against the Giants. According to Snyder, this makes them the first team to honor an active player on their cap. Take a look at the patch below.
honored Mariano Rivera with a sculpture and charitable donation.
According to Chris Toman of MLB.com, the sculpture was created by one of Canada's top contemporary sculptors. It's called Kiviuq's Journey, named after the legendary hero of the Inuit. They also presented him with a $10,000 check for his foundation.
David Robertson came in for the eighth and got two outs but then let a man get on first. The Yankees pitched out, but the throw was weak and the Blue Jays had the potential tying run at second. Girardi pulled Robertson with a 1-0 count and called on Rivera.
Rivera was able to retire Brett Lawrie on a weak grounder to second to end the 8th inning.
The Yankees were not able to add any insurance and Mo had to get three more outs to preserve the Yankee win.
Adam Lind singled up the middle and Colby Rasmus followed with a hard single to right and Toronto was set up with 2 runners on and none out. Kawasaki pinch hit and tried to move the runners up with a bunt. He did bunt but Overbay fielded the ball quickly and forced Lind at third for the first out. Goins grounded out to second with the runners moving up and Mo needed one more out. J.P. Arencibia pinch hit and Mo struck him out on three pitches to end the game.
The save for Rivera was his 44th in 51 save opportunities on the season. He now has 652 career saves. His 2013 season ERA now stands at 2.25.
Thank you to nycjobs for the tip.
ESPN New York's Ian O'Connor shares some of the more personally touching stories from Mariano Rivera's season-long farewell tour, which is now nearing its end. Get the tissues ready.
Buster Olney has a photo.
The top line is his signature, the second line reads "Last to wear #42" and the third line reads "thank you for everything." Here is video of him signing the wall:
Bryan Hoch of MLB.com reports on the pre-game festivities in Boston to honor Mariano Rivera, prior to his final regular season game at Fenway Park.
The Boston Cello Quartet performed Metallica's "Enter Sandman" and he was presented with a few gifts. They played a video montage of Rivera's appearance in game 4 of the 2004 American League Championship Series, which led to a blown save and, eventually, the first Red Sox World Series title since 1918. The video also included his appearance at the Red Sox's 2005 Opening Day celebration, where Rivera acknowledged the home crowd, who had applauded him for blowing said save. David Ortiz presented him with a painting depicting that moment.
The team also presented him with the green "42" placard used on the Red Sox scoreboard to represent the player wearing that jersey. Rivera will be the last one to wear it, so they won't be using it anymore. It was signed by the team. Other gifts included a blue 1934 Fenway Park seat with the number 42 on it and the visiting bullpen's pitching rubber.
If he does not pitch tonight, Rivera will end his career with 55 games pitched in Fenway Park, 50 of which he finished. His record is 2-4 with 36 saves and a 2.54 ERA in 60.3 innings.
ESPN New York. Ryan Feldman of ESPN's Stats & Info found that it there have been three situations in the past 25 seasons that led this type of outcome.
If you watched last night's game, you saw the Yankees take a lead, blow it spectacularly and take it back once again in the top of the 9th. A familiar situation followed: Mariano Rivera entered in the bottom of the 9th and finished the game, collecting his 44th save, to take the American League saves lead.
Or, at least, that's what they said on MLB Network (the channel I was watching) after the game concluded. Later, I received emails from Don S. and nycjobs commenting on the fact that Rivera was not awarded a save, but instead a win. The official scorer in Baltimore involved Rule 10.17(c), which reads:
The official scorer shall not credit as the winning pitcher a relief pitcher who is ineffective in a brief appearance, when at least one succeeding relief pitcher pitches effectively in helping his team maintain its lead. In such a case, the official scorer shall credit as the winning pitcher the succeeding relief pitcher who was most effective, in the judgment of the official scorer.
Rule 10.17(c) Comment: The official scorer generally should, but is not required to, consider the appearance of a relief pitcher to be ineffective and brief if such relief pitcher pitches less than one inning and allows two or more earned runs to score (even if such runs are charged to a previous pitcher). Rule 10.17(b) Comment provides guidance on choosing the winning pitcher from among several succeeding relief pitchers.
I've never heard of this happening. I wondered: how rare is it?
Jay Jaffe of Sports Illustrated did the research and he found that it hasn't been used in this way in the past two decades. That's amazing.
Given that Rivera happens to share the A.L. saves lead with Baltimore's closer and the game occurred in Baltimore, the rarity of the ruling will no doubt lend itself to the (conspiracy?) theory that the scorer did it to help the Orioles closer. I have a hard time going that far, but it is an awkward call, that's for sure. The scorer certainly has the right to invoke the rule, though, and so it stands.