more than 9 and a half years.
I was born a Yankees fan - my dad is one. I would say that when I really started paying attention to the Yankees was around 1992, when I was 7 and 8 years old. I was certainly aware of them before that, but those years are where I started to become more and more aware of the rosters, the players and the games.
That was when we hadn't been particularly good in quite a while. I can remember watching random players on WPIX, with Phil Rizzuto and Bobby Murcer. Players like Roberto Kelly, Danny Tartabull, Randy Velarde, Mike Gallego, Dion James, Gerald Williams, Spike Owen and others. Of course, they were slowly getting better and building the foundation for what would become a dynasty.
Don Mattingly was my first favorite player. It was sad to watch him struggle in his final season with injuries. But he put on a show in the ALDS. I can still remember Ken Griffey Jr. coming around to score in game 5, like it was yesterday. Devastating.
After Mattingly retired, I looked for a new favorite player. I had heard a little bit about Derek Jeter. Prior to the 1996 season, my family attended Yankee Day at the Florida State Fair. At this event, you could meet current and former Yankees, as well as members of the coaching staff. Security was lax, you just had to get in line. It seems crazy now. The Yankees would never do it again because there would be too many people. But back then, they did it and it was awesome.
ALS Association of Greater New York hosted their 19th Annual Lou Gehrig Sports Awards Benefit. Among the honorees was Mariano Rivera.
MLB.com's Mark Newman has a recap of the events. Below, find video of Rivera speaking.
"I would like to thank the Greater New York Chapter for honoring me with this special award named for one of the greatest Yankees ever. And I mean that when I say one of the greatest -- one of the finest men who played this game with dignity and loyalty, and he was taken with this disease. He lost his life to this, but his fighting spirit is in us. That's why you guys are here -- to give back and stay strong and help to defeat this disease that has taken so many lives. I know -- I'm sure -- that we're going to find a cure for this disease."
bid on their website.
Anthony McCarron of the New York Daily News reports that Mariano Rivera will be honored at the 19th Annual Lou Gehrig Sports Awards Benefit on November 7 at the New York Marriott Marquis.
The event is held by the Greater New York chapter of the ALS Association and tickets cost $1,250 person.
Thank you to nycjobs for the tip.
11/02: Mo, Thanks for the Memories
In 1996, he probably had the best season for a set-up relief pitcher in the history of baseball. All the Yankees had to do was to have the lead after six innings and the game was theirs.
Mo became the closer in 1997 and Sandy Alomar, Jr. broke Yankee fans collective hearts in game 4 with a late home run off of Rivera. But rather than whine and mope, Mo came back in 1998 and led the Yankees to three straight World Series championships.
I remember in 1999 against the Braves when Chipper Jones and other teammates in the dugout were laughing at Ryan Klesko when Mo broke three bats in one AB. The Yankees swept and Mo was named World Series MVP. The dominance continued in 2000 against the Mets and Mo was the first closer to be on the mound for the clinching game of three consecutive World Series.
In 2001, it was just not meant to be as the Arizona Diamondbacks found a way due to a huge error by Mo and a couple of broken bats to win on a Luis Gonzales pop fly over the drawn in infield to win the World Series.
10/25: MarianoRivera.com Updates
all-time saves list, historical comparison, milestones, regular season stats and fan photos.
The last of which features some great new photos from MarianoRivera.com reader, Moises Young Diaz.
Thank you for visiting MarianoRivera.com.
Bud Selig presented Mariano Rivera with the Commissioner's Historic Achievement Award, which is given to those who have had a historical impact on Major League Baseball. Below, watch the press conference.
In addition, here are a couple of bonus clips. First, Rivera joking about a second retirement tour in 2014. Below that, Rivera reflects on receiving the award in Boston.
MLB.com's Paul Hagen reports that Commissioner Bud Selig will honor Mariano Rivera prior to game 2 of the World Series tonight. He will present Rivera with the Commissioner's Historic Achievement Award, which is awarded to those who have made a historical impact on Major League Baseball.
It was last presented in 2011, to Ken Griffey, Jr.