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Who cares who catches Mariano Rivera’s 602nd save?

Sep 19, 2011, 9:40 AM EDT

Mariano Rivera

Mariano Rivera‘s next save will break the all-time saves record he currently shares with Trevor Hoffman. Against that backdrop, there has been some general chatter about whether Joe Girardi will let Jorge Posada, Rivera’s longtime batterymate, catch save number 602.  According to Marc Carig of the Star Ledger, Girardi isn’t inclined to do that.

May I note for the record that this sort of thing is something you only hear about with the Yankees?  Really, no one cares about this stuff with any other team, but every time a Yankee is near some milestone or if there’s some other special occasion of some sort the manner of how it is accomplished, not just the accomplishment, becomes an issue.  Who will catch? Will it be at home? It’s like the biggest first world problem of all time.

How about this: Mariano Rivera’s first-ever save came on May 17, 1996 against the Angels. Joe Girardi caught it.  He should activate himself so he can catch it.  If he can’t, we should write columns about how a special moment is being taken from us.

  1. Chris Fiorentino - Sep 19, 2011 at 9:43 AM

    I think Mariano should catch it himself…and he should play all the rest of the positions too like Bugs Bunny vs. the Gas-House Gorillas

  2. sdelmonte - Sep 19, 2011 at 9:46 AM

    Why not Yogi Berra? The greatest Yankee catcher, back one last time.

    Of course, all this assumes Mo is needed for a save. The Rays plan to do everything they can to make this moot. And for that matter, so do the Yankees, who would be happy to enter the ninth inning with 6-0 leads every night. (Yeah, odds are there will be save opportunities. But it’s not guaranteed.)

    • Jonny 5 - Sep 19, 2011 at 9:50 AM

      Delmonte, You beat me to it. damn!

    • okobojicat - Sep 19, 2011 at 11:55 AM

      If you want it really historic, why not Thurmon Munson. That would be fricken awesome.

  3. Jonny 5 - Sep 19, 2011 at 9:47 AM

    Yogi Berra. He should do it. Make that sh!t really historic.

  4. pestiesti - Sep 19, 2011 at 9:58 AM

    Is it too much to hope that Posada does catch it and that the Yankees give up the tying run on a passed ball?

  5. Francisco (FC) - Sep 19, 2011 at 10:07 AM

    I was at the game at Rogers Centre yesterdy, for me it was win-win. Either the Jays beat the Yanks or I would have been able to see Mo notch save 602.

    • kopy - Sep 19, 2011 at 10:47 AM

      Or the Yankees beat the Jays by more than 3! But I’m happy for you that Brandon Morrow was like a house on fire.

      • Francisco (FC) - Sep 19, 2011 at 10:50 AM

        Or the Yankees beat the Jays by more than 3!

        Pfffttt… with that line-up Girardi put on yesterday? I think not! :)

      • Francisco (FC) - Sep 19, 2011 at 10:53 AM

        But I’m happy for you that Brandon Morrow was like a house on fire.

        I got a free Pizza slice out of the deal! When he hit his 7th K all game ticket stubs became valid for one free slice of pizza starting today at any pizza-pizza franchise location.

      • tribester - Sep 19, 2011 at 4:36 PM

        7 Ks? It takes 13 Ks at AT&T Park to win the free sausages.

  6. kappy32 - Sep 19, 2011 at 10:50 AM

    God, I’m tired of this already. NY Yankee beat-writers are just horrible. Everything has to be so damn sentimental from Jeter hitting 3k to selling overpriced steaks & sushi (c’mon, really? Sushi at a baseball game?). Are Yankees the only players who break “records”? This saves record is as meaningless as the sack record in the NFL. When a specific statistic isn’t tallied from the beginning of the game, how is it a record? Mariano is the best player at his position, but his position is comparable to being an NFL place kicker. It doesn’t matter who catches 602, and frankly, 602 doesn’t matter much. If it wasn’t a Yankee doing it, these sane clowns who take up space in otherwise decent newspapers would be diminishing the importance of reaching this feat. Unless it’s a Yankee, it doesn’t matter.

    • proudlycanadian - Sep 19, 2011 at 11:00 AM

      Don’t knock sushi. I am a consultant to a small chain of sushi restaurants. It is healthier than ball park hot dogs. As far as the rest of your commentary is concerned, I am in agreement.

      • nolanwiffle - Sep 19, 2011 at 11:38 AM

        Presumably you like baseball…..but not hot dogs? Where do you stand on apple pie and Chevrolets? My god man! it’s as if you aren’t even Ameri……..oh, now I get it.

      • proudlycanadian - Sep 19, 2011 at 12:46 PM

        I prefer cake and Ford’s

  7. proudlycanadian - Sep 19, 2011 at 10:56 AM

    We can assume that Rivera will not stop at 602, so the catcher for #602 does not matter in the overall scheme of things. I assume that Rivera will pitch next season and that Posada will not be playing for the Yankees, so the person who catches his final save will not be Posada.

  8. yankeesfanlen - Sep 19, 2011 at 11:11 AM

    Does Mo even KNOW who’s catching him? He sure doesn’t CARE!
    Just save this one occasion for Grumpy.

  9. cur68 - Sep 19, 2011 at 11:25 AM

    A catcher’s responsibility when catching Mo: get the location from Rivera, put the glove there, hold onto the ball after he smacks the ball into it. Grumpy could do that. Hell, my dog could do that.

  10. yankeesgameday - Sep 19, 2011 at 11:41 AM

    This particular aspect to the story had nothing to do with Mo and everything to do with how Yankee fans, and New Yorkers in general, love Posada and still think the world should respect things like time served at your job, your Passion for it, your personal meaning to your employers and the relationships that exist between the members of your work family.

    I left New York years ago for Miami and California, but what I know of the people in the city is that they are entirely misunderstood about their general approach to life. Even pre 9-11 the prevailing attitude was that there are so many people living in such a small space that “we are all in this together.” There is a greater sense of neighborhood and community in that city of 8 million than in any other place I have lived and Posada has become one of their own.

    New Yorkers really do look out for each other, and are also sentimental people who are aware of their own history. So you combine the desire to see one of their own being done “right” by their boss and you’re going to have an entire fan base pulling for Posada to catch that one inning because they genuinely care about things being done “right” and respect being paid to those who have earned it.

    Joe would win more good will and support from Yankee fans and New Yorkers in general if he put Posada back there than I think he realizes.

    We are all about moments and special gestures if respect and history. Posada catching would be a nod to everything he had meant to that team and I think it would be the perfect demoumemt to his career. He should catch 602 and that should be his final act as a player for the Yankees.

    • nolanwiffle - Sep 19, 2011 at 12:10 PM

      “New Yorkers really do look out for each other…”

      Between 1977 and 1993, New York City had a 17 year streak of topping 5,000 murders annually. Don’t get me wrong, I love New York. However, I’m not prepared to paint it as Mayberry.

      • gammagammahey - Sep 19, 2011 at 12:31 PM

        I thought Steve Sax got put away for all of those.

      • phukyouk - Sep 19, 2011 at 1:37 PM

        YOU.ARE.A.GOD!

  11. yankeesgameday - Sep 19, 2011 at 12:23 PM

    5000 out of 8 million plus. Percentage wise nyc is probably much lower in violent crime than other major urban cities. I’m not going to go research it but I feel safer walking around Times Square at midnight than I do on Main Street USA here in Huntington Beach with all the drunk wanna be mma fighters and met tweakers walking from bar to bar.

    • rhandome - Sep 19, 2011 at 4:16 PM

      Funny, I’d think most of the Met tweakers would reside in New York.

    • jwbiii - Sep 19, 2011 at 9:31 PM

      New York is a little below average in violent crimes among major cities. It is the lowest major city in terms of property crimes. Much of the latter is due to a very low rate of stolen cars; I suspect this is due to a relatively low rate of car ownership in New York.

  12. ssazz - Sep 19, 2011 at 1:59 PM

    “Really, no one cares about this stuff with any other team, but every time a Yankee is near some milestone or if there’s some other special occasion of some sort the manner of how it is accomplished, not just the accomplishment, becomes an issue. Who will catch? Will it be at home? It’s like the biggest first world problem of all time.”

    You addressed your lame complaint right in the first line of this paragraph. Who exactly asked you to care anyway is my initial response? Yes, Yankee fans think it would be a nice touch, and a most likely final send off to Jorge’s lengthy career in pinstripes, if he got to catch the record breaker. It would mean a lot to him clearly, sorry if that notion offends your sensibilities so much. If you’re someone who isn’t a Yankee fan, or think it’s a meaningless record regardless, then yeah just simply don’t watch or seek out articles related to the topic. Not complicated. If you’re a Braves fan or an O’s fan, then no, of course it’s not of interest to you. Is it really that hard to understand? Girardi didn’t catch the bulk of those saves, the whole “he caught the first one” sarcasm is a meaningless and weak straw man. Posada did, they are also very close friends and in their final season as teammates. Which is one of the reasons this is even a topic to begin with, how often do players remain teammates uninterrupted for 16 plus seasons? It’s not like these things happen all the time, but only the Yankees make an issue of it. They’re a very rare set of circumstances involved actually.

    Also, that supposed laundry list of milestones you referenced which all supposedly have too much scrutiny around how they’re done. Y’know, all two of the ones you cited. Well again, if you’re not a Yankee fan then don’t follow the story. Jeter and Yankee fans wanted to see him achieve the record at home if it was possible. What the hell is so outrageous or hard to get about that? The EXACT same anticipation surrounded Rose and Reds fans wanting him to break the hit record at home in Cincinnati if possible. Which is completely understandable for any player or fanbase in that situation, …unless of course it’s a Yankee player or their fans, then it’s over the top crazy time!!

  13. rhandome - Sep 19, 2011 at 4:10 PM

    Yankees Yankees Yankees. Yankees? Yankees. Yankee Mystique Yankees The New York Yankees. DA YANKS. Yankees mcYankees Yankees. Yanks. Yankees.

  14. proudlycanadian - Sep 19, 2011 at 4:29 PM

    Rivera is pitching in a save situation and Martin stayed in the game to catch. No real reason to swith catchers as 602 is just a number and there will be more saves in his career.

    • proudlycanadian - Sep 19, 2011 at 4:32 PM

      602 is done and 603 will occur later this week.

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