Reports out of Kansas City state that Yankees closer Mariano Rivera has a torn ACL and could miss the rest of the season. Yankees manager Joe Girardi told reporters that it is a preliminary report but could be “as bad as it gets” according to ESPN New York.
The greatest closer of all-time, Rivera was carted off the field about an hour before game time against the Royals after he twisted his knee shagging fly balls in the outfield during batting practice. The article on ESPN states that Alex Rodriguez could be heard saying “oh my God, oh my God” as Rivera left the field. Wallace Matthews who wrote the article described Rivera as “contorted in obvious pain” and “rubbing his right knee.”
Rivera is the all-time saves leader with 608 and that is where the record could stay should this injury be season ending. It was widely speculated that Rivera was set to announce his plans to retire after the season, with the formal decision coming sometime after the all-star break. This is truly a difficult way to see the greatest closer to ever play the game end his illustrious career, if in fact this is the end.
Much will be made about whether he should have been out there catching fly balls during batting practice, but give the guy credit as he was doing to stay in shape. Most players would sit and watch, but Mo was always a step above the rest and his determination was evident by wanting to be in peak physical condition.
According to Wallace, Girardi hasn’t named a replacement for Rivera but is said to be leaning towards David Robertson to close out the Yankee ball games. Robertson has been lights out as the eighth inning set up man for Rivera, not allowing a run in 11.0 innings of work. More impressively, he’s only given up 7 hits and 3 walks in his efforts.
The Yankees bullpen is still great, but a major, major piece is now missing.
We will try and get some reaction from Yankees writers in the coming days. Keep checking back right here at BoSox Injection.