Thursday, September 15, 2011

The Great Mariano Rivera

The other day, New York Yankee great Mariano "Mo" Rivera recorded his 600th save, only the second closer in MLB history to do that. The San Diego Padre's longtime closer Trevor Hoffmann retired after 601 saves, which means Mo will be the all-time saves leader with 2 more saves. Yet his Hall of Fame resume is so ridiculous that he'd still be a first ballot entry to Cooperstown without the saves record.

I recently debated with a friend about who are the great closers in MLB history. I agreed with his choices and he disagreed with some of mine. It didn't Obama-it, mind you, and conceded my choices and call it a comprise. Instead, I explained that it is the problem of relativity in that Mo makes every other closer utterly pale in comparison.

Mo is the Babe Ruth of closers. In 1927, Babe Ruth hit more home runs than many teams combined. Babe Ruth was simply that much better than everyone else. That is how Mariano Rivera is with closers. It is unfair to judge other closers to his standards because they will always come out wanting. In life, we all can be great, but sometimes there are those whose greatness outshines everyone else. One of those is Mariano Rivera. Congratulations, Mo. It has been an honor watching you pitch all these years.

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