Mariano Rivera has hinted that 2012 will probably be his last year in pinstripes. Rivera, who turns 43-years-old(!!) in November, has been dominating hitters since 1996. Like fine wine, Rivera has only been getting better with age. Since 2008, Rivera has averaged a 1.70 ERA and 40 saves per season. While Rivera’s performance has not slowed down, his desire (and his health) has started to wane. During the off-season, Rivera had surgery on his vocal cords. While this won’t affect his performance in the ninth inning, the experience was eye-opening for the family-oriented Rivera.
As we anxiously wait for the 2012 regular season to begin, stop and reflect on this year’s team. The Yankees boast three sure-fire hall of Famers (Rivera, Jeter, and A-Rod) and three others that are well on their way (Cano, Teixeira, and Andruw Jones). Realize that the most dominant player of this group will likely hang it up this fall.
Enjoy every ‘Enter Sandman’. Enjoy every broken bat. Enjoy watching the Yankees’ best player since Mickey Mantle play. Enjoy Mo while we still have him locking down the ninth.