I get various e-mails from users contacting me through MarianoRivera.com. Mostly good, some bad (one guy said he should rot in you know where). I generally disregard the bad ones and especially don’t respond to anything inappropriate. But, I got an e-mail from a guy and I felt compelled to defend Mo.
The summation of the e-mail was:
Ever since he made that error against Arizona in the 2001 World Series, he has been a different pitcher. He’s been throwing batting practice. I love him but it’s tim for him to go. With a 1 run lead in the bottom of the ninth, we can’t call on him anymore. He can’t get it done, especially in the big games
So, I felt compelled to respond. And here we are:
Thank you for your e-mail.
I’m not too sure why you are sending this in to a Mariano Rivera unofficial FAN site, but I can only say that we disagree. Since that throw you mention, his ERA in in regular season (including this year) is 2.10, which is pretty much the same as it’s always been. Things happen, this is life… people adjust, teams adjust. Especially when you see him so much. Circumstances don’t go your way. Players make errors. No one is perfect. And other worldly performance cannot be expected, only appreciated when they happen. This goes for the greatest players in the history of the game at any position, of which Mo can certainly stake a claim.
In the postseason, he has allowed 2 ER since that throw. He allowed that in the 2000 World Series alone. His ERA in the postseason since that throw? 0.60.
These numbers paint a picture that doesn’t support your statement. If you want someone better than 2.10 in the regular season and 0.60 in the postseason (which I doubt any other pitcher who has pitched as much as Mo has done in that span), that’s fine. Take Eric Gagne or Brad Lidge, if you want. Take today’s “hot” ones. But, you won’t get what Mo gave us in his prime in their prime and I doubt you’ll get what Mo can still give us.
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