Congratulations to Mariano Rivera

Under a Yeatsean full moon, beneath the Rabbit On The Moon (as I have been taught), in Seattle, a franchise against which he first revealed his greatness on a post-Yom Kippur night in October 1995, Mariano Rivera scored the six-hundredth save of his career. The final result, almost but not quite incidental, was 3-2 in favor of the Yankees. Rivera saved the game for the much-vilified A. J. Burnett (10-11), who left after six innings (the first three pitched poorly, the second three outstandingly). The seventh was pitched by Rafael Soriano. Brian Robertson struggled thro the eighth, wiggling out of trouble in his patented spine-tingling fashion. Like a boxer at the top of the card entering the ring, Rivera bounded in for the ninth. He immediately dispatched the first Mariners batter on a strikeout. But then the great Ichiro served a soft single to left field. The following batter struck out. In an improbable finish, catcher Russell Martin, who had a tremendous game behind the plate (Burnett was all over the place), gunned down Ichiro attempting to steal second base to put himself into scoring position. On that unusual final out, Mariano Rivera became only the second pitcher ever to record six-hundred saves. As was noted during a postgame interview with the self-effacing pitcher, six-hundred saves means six-hundred wins for the Yankees. Amazing!

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About rightoffthebatbook

Co-author of the book, "Right Off the Bat: Baseball, Cricket, Literature, and Life"
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