Buster Olney spoke with Mariano Rivera yesterday. In the non-paywalled portion of his column, Olney explains Rivera’s reasoning for retiring now, even if he’s still at the top of his game.
What interests me the most is this comment, though, making it abundantly clear that he is not pitching after 2013:
“I don’t care if I get 100 saves,” he said. “I don’t care if they offer me $50 million. That’s it.”
How much you wanna bet, though, that a New York columnist still tries to squeeze out a “could Mariano come back?” thing before the season is out?
If it were up to him, Blue Jays third baseman Josh Donaldson would finish the remainder of his career in Toronto. In fact, he’d be “ticked pink” if the club decided to sign him to a long-term deal. Whether the Blue Jays share that sentiment is still unclear, as Donaldson said Saturday that the team has yet to engage his agent in extension talks.
“I’ve said that I wanted to be here,” he told MLB.com’s Gregor Chisholm. “That’s pretty much all I can say. I’m not the one who makes the decisions, nor would I try to put them in the position to do that. Like I said, I believe the situation will become more fluid when the time is right.”
That doesn’t necessarily mean an extension is out of the question. The Blue Jays reached an unprecedented one-year, $23 million agreement with the three-time All-Star in arbitration, and have been reticent to field trade offers despite continued interest from the Cardinals this winter.
Donaldson, 32, is poised to enter his eighth season in the majors and fourth with the Blue Jays. In 2017, he batted .270/.385/.559 with 33 home runs and a .944 OPS in 496 plate appearances, ranking sixth among all major league third baseman with 5.0 fWAR. He’s scheduled to enter free agency following the 2018 season.