Every time Mariano Rivera says or does something even moderately encouraging, the Yankees are quick to come out and say that he isn’t coming back this season. Today was no different.
According to Steven Miller of MLB.com, Rivera threw in the outfield at Yankee Stadium prior to tonight’s game against the Rangers. Yankees pitching coach Larry Rothschild told manager Joe Girardi that the all-time saves leader “looked pretty good” a little over two months removed from surgery to repair a torn ACL in his right knee. Still, Girardi tried his best to shoot down any speculation about a possible return this year.
“I don’t see it happening.”
“When you’re a baseball player and you can’t do the things you used to do, as soon as you can do it, you try it. That’s probably what Mo did.”
“Joey Buzzkill” has a better ring to it than “Binder Boy,” wouldn’t you say?
The Yankees fell behind early to the Orioles on Sunday afternoon, a day after dropping both ends of Saturday’s doubleheader. Their game, as did every other game on Sunday with the exception of the Braves-Cardinals doubleheader, started at 3:05 or 3:10 EDT, a change Major League Baseball recently made to create fairness on the final day of the season.
Girardi is not a fan. Per the Associated Press:
It was cloudy at Camden Yards at 3:05 p.m., but late-afternoon games often make it difficult for batters to see pitches.
Girardi said, “Here’s the thing that bothers me: If it’s a sunny day you’re playing in shadows.”
He added, “If it’s the most important game of the year to get in, I don’t think that’s right.”
Understanding the idea is for every team to play at the same time, Girardi said, “Then play all night games.”
One wonders if MLB had scheduled Sunday’s slate of games for the night, if Girardi would have instead complained about batters losing fly balls in the stadium lights. Furthermore, both teams have to play in the same conditions.
Marlins outfielder Ichiro Suzuki was given an opportunity to play a new position in Sunday’s series finale against the Phillies. After the Phillies rallied to take a 6-2 lead in the seventh, the Marlins let Suzuki take the hill in the eighth. And, in news that surprises no one, he was impressive.
Though Suzuki gave up a run on two hits, he flashed a fastball that hit the mid-80’s and a breaking ball with some bite.
Suzuki, who turns 42 years old later this month, is 65 hits of 3,000 in his major league career. The Marlins are interested in bringing him back in 2016.