Monday, September 27, 2010

Time to worry about Mariano Rivera?

Is it time for the New York Yankees and their fans to worry about Mariano Rivera?

Given his history, that question seems ridiculous to even ask. But something just didn't seem right about Mo in yesterday's game. He wasn't his usual confident self. Mo seemed unnerved by the Boston Red Sox running wild on the base paths. Granted, that would probably unnerve most pitchers. But Mariano isn't most pitchers. He's the greatest closer in baseball history.

In past years, he would have simply shrugged off the base running and the first out of the inning that was driven to the wall and frozen the next few hitters at the plate to end the game. But he seemed to get rattled last night and let the game get away from him, as he has in several recent outings. I was at last Monday's game at the stadium when Mo came out with a three-run lead and even that game wasn't the easy save it should have been as the tying run made it to the batter's box.

The thing that worries me is that when Mo has had rough outings in the past, he's always been able to shrug them off and come back strong the next time out, but that doesn't seem to be true this time around.

The New York Post suggests that the Yankees are already worried about Mo. But if that's the case, why would Joe Girardi bring him into the 8th inning on a night the Yankees had to win for a four-out save when Kerry Wood has been so lights out? The simple answer is that Girardi still believes that Mo is the best pitcher in his bullpen and if he still has faith in his guy than so should we.

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