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Wednesday, September 25, 2013
Some Rivera fundamentals:
Let the record show that this man racked up 31 postseason saves in which he got more than three outs. Only 32 other closers in the wild-card era even saved one postseason game like that. The closers for all the other AL teams in that time have saved 21 games like that combined.
But Rivera’s managers also knew better than to save him just for save situations when it came time to take the October stage. So in total, he made 58 postseason appearances of more than one inning—and allowed an earned run in exactly six of them. His ERA in those games: 0.53.
. . .
OK, one more postseason nugget before we move on. This man faced the best hitters on the best teams in baseball in 98 postseason games—and held them to this microscopic slash line: .174/.212/.227. Now here’s what that means, essentially: In the most important games of his life, he turned the best hitters on earth into Houston Jimenez—only not that good. (Jimenez’s career slash line: .185/.221/.234.)
. . .
For those of us who care about numbers, this is a big, big week—because Rivera still has a shot to become the only pitcher in the live-ball era with a WHIP below 1.00—even if it’s only microscopically below 1.00. He heads into the final days of his career with 998 hits allowed and 286 walks. Which totals up to 1,284 baserunners (via hits and walks) in 1,282 1/3 innings. So, if he just has two or three more perfect innings in him, he can still wind up with fewer baserunners (via hits and walks) than innings.
Much more in TFA.
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