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Thursday, March 07, 2013

Mariano Rivera Plans To Retire After 2013 Season

It seems Mariano Rivera will call it a career after one last season in the Bronx.

The Yankees have a press conference scheduled for 10 a.m. Saturday, when Rivera will announce his intentions to retire after the 2013 season, according to Joel Sherman of the New York Post.

The legendary closer promised last month he’d let us all in on his decision before Opening Day.

“Always possible private Rivera decides to change mind at last sec,” tweeted Sherman, “but time and room are booked for his retirement announcement.”

Thanks to Doug.

Repoz Posted: March 07, 2013 at 02:29 PM | 320 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: yankees

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   1. Der-K thinks the Essex Green were a good band. Posted: March 07, 2013 at 02:50 PM (#4382980)
bump
   2. SG Posted: March 07, 2013 at 02:57 PM (#4382989)
I figure he would have retired after last season if he hadn't gotten hurt, but part of me was hoping he'd keep pitching until he was 50.
   3. Rants Mulliniks Posted: March 07, 2013 at 02:58 PM (#4382990)
Will he make the HOF on the first ballot?
   4. SG Posted: March 07, 2013 at 02:59 PM (#4382992)
I think so. He won't be unanimous though.
   5. jacksone (AKA It's OK...) Posted: March 07, 2013 at 03:01 PM (#4382994)
I think there will be enough 'no closers' and 'no first ballots ever' to just miss. Second ballot for sure.
   6. DL from MN Posted: March 07, 2013 at 03:02 PM (#4382995)
Think the Yankees will give him a shot at another ring and trade him to a contender?
   7. jacksone (AKA It's OK...) Posted: March 07, 2013 at 03:04 PM (#4382997)
Who gets closer to Rivera's save record - Papelbon or Soria? Is there really anyone else?
   8. SG Posted: March 07, 2013 at 03:05 PM (#4382998)
Kimbrel.
   9. GregD Posted: March 07, 2013 at 03:06 PM (#4383000)
Put me in the column of thinking yes he will make the first ballot easily
   10. Gamingboy Posted: March 07, 2013 at 03:12 PM (#4383005)
Long live the number 42.
   11. tfbg9 Posted: March 07, 2013 at 03:24 PM (#4383011)
As long as keeps "Mo'ing" them down like he always has, I will believe it when I see it. And then I will expect a comeback.
   12. 'zop sympathizes with the wrong ####### people Posted: March 07, 2013 at 03:26 PM (#4383012)
If the Yanks are out of it (as they most likely will be), I'd like to see them give a start to Rivera in September. I've always wanted to see what post-1997 Rivera would do in a 5-6 inning outing.
   13. Ray (RDP) Posted: March 07, 2013 at 03:32 PM (#4383015)
According to b-r Rivera hasn't pitched yet this spring. What is the timetable for his return?
   14. Howie Menckel Posted: March 07, 2013 at 03:35 PM (#4383017)

If they're going to throw Rivera a bone in September, it would be to let him play center field for an inning. He always talks about that.

Of course, he was shagging flies before the injury last season - but if he's retiring anyway...

   15. Ray (RDP) Posted: March 07, 2013 at 03:36 PM (#4383018)
Will he make the HOF on the first ballot?


Yes, presuming the voters can stop masturbating over him long enough to free up a hand to check his name off on the ballot.

I think he's a deserving HOFer, obviously, though wildly overrated due to the relative lack of innings compared to other HOFers. Since when do people salivate over 52 WAR pitchers?
   16. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: March 07, 2013 at 03:37 PM (#4383020)
Why wait til the end of the year?
   17. Ray (RDP) Posted: March 07, 2013 at 03:37 PM (#4383021)
If they're going to throw Rivera a bone in September, it would be to let him play center field for an inning. He always talks about that.


I thought he got the flyball shagging out of his system after suffering the most pointless injury in baseball history.
   18. SG Posted: March 07, 2013 at 03:38 PM (#4383023)
What is the timetable for his return?


He's throwing BP and sim games. He just hasn't pitched in an actual game yet. He should be ready at the start of the year.

Since when do people salivate over 52 WAR pitchers?


I realize you're one of the exceptions, but I think in the eyes of many Rivera's postseason stats make him more than a '52 WAR' pitcher.
   19. Nasty Nate Posted: March 07, 2013 at 03:39 PM (#4383025)
Since when do people salivate over 52 WAR pitchers?


just because you don't like the answer to this question doesn't mean you don't know it....
   20. Randy Jones Posted: March 07, 2013 at 03:42 PM (#4383028)
Since when do people salivate over 52 WAR pitchers?


A lot of people seem to talk up this guy and his 50.3 WAR.
   21. Blastin Posted: March 07, 2013 at 03:43 PM (#4383029)
My favorite player.
   22. What did Billy Ripken have against ElRoy Face? Posted: March 07, 2013 at 03:43 PM (#4383030)
Private Rivera? Man, after that many years of exemplary service you'd think he'd have been promoted at least to Lt. Colonel or something.
   23. Bruce Markusen Posted: March 07, 2013 at 03:45 PM (#4383031)
Leave it to Ray to insult Rivera, one of the game's greatest relief pitchers and a guy who has been regarded as a fine and well-liked teammate. Well done, Ray. You never disappoint.

"Most pointless injury in baseball history?" Yeah, as if no one has ever gotten hurt slamming his hand in a temper tantrum (Doyle Alexander) or in any of dozens of other ways featured at this site. http://www.stevetheump.com/strange_injuries.htm
   24. Rants Mulliniks Posted: March 07, 2013 at 03:51 PM (#4383034)
I don't know, Mo doesn't have a lot of innings compared to other HOFers, but "reliever" has been a career option for a good 50 years now. He's farther ahead of the second best guy than the second is ahead of the 50th. That 206 career ERA+ is probably the most anomolous stat in baseball.
   25. Ray (RDP) Posted: March 07, 2013 at 03:51 PM (#4383035)
A lot of people seem to talk up this guy and his 50.3 WAR.


Another pitcher who is wildly overrated, as people think he was better than Pedro in his prime.
   26. Blastin Posted: March 07, 2013 at 03:52 PM (#4383038)
Shh, Bruce. Ray is making a very important point that must be pointed out right this instant.
   27. Ray (RDP) Posted: March 07, 2013 at 03:53 PM (#4383040)
"Most pointless injury in baseball history?" Yeah, as if no one has ever gotten hurt slamming his hand in a temper tantrum (Doyle Alexander)


The "most" pointless was hyperbole -- I'll settle for "one of the most" -- but how is hurting yourself shagging flyballs more worthy than hurting yourself after being upset about an actual game performance/situation?

Rivera getting hurt in the way that he did was the height of silliness.
   28. Ok, Griffey's Dunn (Nothing Iffey About Griffey) Posted: March 07, 2013 at 03:53 PM (#4383041)
Rivera is going to retire with the lowest ERA (min. 1000ip) since... wait for it... Babe Ruth. I think with the saves record and an ERA that hasn't been put up since the Deadball Era, the electorate will find a way to induct Rivera on the first go round.
   29. JJ1986 Posted: March 07, 2013 at 03:53 PM (#4383042)
He was better than Pedro.
   30. Rants Mulliniks Posted: March 07, 2013 at 03:57 PM (#4383045)
The Glenallen Hill night terror injury will never be topped.
   31. tfbg9 Posted: March 07, 2013 at 04:02 PM (#4383048)
Another pitcher who is wildly overrated, as people think he was better than Pedro in his prime.


And another pitcher whose rep is bolstered by great post season stats, plus he never blew a couple games in the biggest gag job in history!
I kid. I kid. And I'm tired of seeing my guys ground meekly to 2nd off Mo. Retire.
   32. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: March 07, 2013 at 04:02 PM (#4383049)
I think he's a deserving HOFer, obviously, though wildly overrated due to the relative lack of innings compared to other HOFers. Since when do people salivate over 52 WAR pitchers?

I agree with Ray on this one. Rivera is grossly overrated. Take away the leverage index, and he's a 30 WAR pitcher.

Did nobody notice how the Yankees didn't miss him, at all, last year?

He was less important to the four Championship teams than Jeter, Williams, Pettitte, and Cone. Maybe equal to Tino and O'Neill.

Closers just aren't a big deal. I thought we all knew that?
   33. Der-K thinks the Essex Green were a good band. Posted: March 07, 2013 at 04:04 PM (#4383052)
The Marlins had a series of celebratory injuries (during high-fives, pie tosses, etc...), which they responded to by trying to never win again.
   34. Ray (RDP) Posted: March 07, 2013 at 04:10 PM (#4383056)
Closers just aren't a big deal. I thought we all knew that?


Apparently not.

And, yeah, I didn't even bring up the LI issue, which is the elephant in the room where his 52 WAR is posted.

He gets extra credit for the vast majority of his innings.
   35. SoSH U at work Posted: March 07, 2013 at 04:12 PM (#4383060)
The Marlins had a series of celebratory injuries (during high-fives, pie tosses, etc...), which they responded to by trying to never win again.


Kendry Morales' injury is the gold standard here.
   36. tfbg9 Posted: March 07, 2013 at 04:13 PM (#4383064)
His "best" year was '96, no?
   37. BDC Posted: March 07, 2013 at 04:13 PM (#4383066)
So what would be the scale of comparison for injuries that had some point? I mean, they're all pretty senseless when you think about it. Cameron and Beltran collide, somebody sits on Derek Jeter while he's sliding into third, Josh Hamilton breaks a collarbone trying to score – what would have been achieved if these things hadn't happened, that made them somehow worth it? Rivera wasn't playing in a game, but he was doing what ballplayers do; should he have sat on a pouf in the bullpen while the rookies did ballplayer things instead? Going down the scale, you've got Jim Lonborg hurting himself skiing, Aaron Boone playing basketball, that sort of thing; then it's down to washing trucks and taking out the garbage before you get to the spiders and pies-in-the-face. But what's the point to any of this? Life is a series of accidents waiting to happen.
   38. Der-K thinks the Essex Green were a good band. Posted: March 07, 2013 at 04:14 PM (#4383068)
Oh definitely, SoSH - but I give the fish extra credit for volume
   39. Ray (RDP) Posted: March 07, 2013 at 04:16 PM (#4383072)
The most hilarious part about Rivera's injury was that his job is so easy that the guy sitting next to him in the pen was able to do it as well.

Try replacing a "bestest of the bestest, OMIGAAAWD" position player or starting pitcher that way.

"Rivera is hurt. Whatarewegonnado whatarewegonnado whatarewegonnaDOOOO?!?!?"

It turns out that the answer was "plug in another guy from your bullpen."

Yes, Rivera's loss created an innings deficit in the pen, but it was nothing they couldn't overcome and the point is that his "job," which is supposed to be vastly important -- MAYDAY MAYDAY WHO IS GOING TO CLOSE NOW?!?!?! -- was handled very easily by another reliever -- and they didn't even have to go outside of the organization to get him. He was sitting there. He was sitting right there.
   40. Lassus Posted: March 07, 2013 at 04:18 PM (#4383074)
Some people simply have zero sense at all of dramatic narrative, even when a lack of empirical value is freely admitted.
   41. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: March 07, 2013 at 04:23 PM (#4383082)
Some people simply have zero sense at all of dramatic narrative, even when a lack of empirical value is freely admitted.

There actually wasn't that much drama to Rivera's unwordly post-season scoreless streak.

The Yankees won almost all those series very easily, and 3 or 4 extra blown saves in 1998-2000 very likely doesn't change their ring count at all.

If the Yankees had re-upped John Wetteland in 1997, and traded Rivera for someone who didn't pan out, they almost certainly have the same number of Championships.
   42. SG Posted: March 07, 2013 at 04:25 PM (#4383084)
You could separate the job from the player doing the job, although I suppose it's more fun to piss in Rivera's fans corn flakes.
   43. Nasty Nate Posted: March 07, 2013 at 04:29 PM (#4383090)
There actually wasn't that much drama to Rivera's unwordly post-season scoreless streak.


To be fair, he has other long postseason scoreless streaks and drama outside of the 98-00 championship run.

If the Yankees had re-upped John Wetteland in 1997, and traded Rivera for someone who didn't pan out, they almost certainly have the same number of Championships.


I think "almost certainly" is too strong and FWIW they would likely NOT have the same number of AL pennants.
   44. Gonfalon Bubble Posted: March 07, 2013 at 04:32 PM (#4383092)
If you redistribute the same nine runs through random variation, the Giants still win 5-4, but Bobby Thomson doesn't need to bat. So spare us the arm waves and the screaming.
   45. Ray (RDP) Posted: March 07, 2013 at 04:32 PM (#4383094)
Some people simply have zero sense at all of dramatic narrative, even when a lack of empirical value is freely admitted.


Drama doesn't have anything to do with value. But I'll bite: How much added "drama" does a closer bring when his team wins 16 of 17 World Series games over a five-year stretch, as they did from 1996-2000? Were they losing those World Series without him?

Granted he brought a lot of "drama" when Sandy Alomar homered off him in 1997, and when Luis Gonzalez beat him in Game 7 of 2001, and when Millar/Roberts/Meuller beat him in 2004.

Why have they only won once since 2000, if The Greatest Closer In History has so very very much value?
   46. Crispix reaches boiling point with lackluster play Posted: March 07, 2013 at 04:41 PM (#4383102)
Nobody is ever going to convince you that you should care about something, RDP.
   47. 'zop sympathizes with the wrong ####### people Posted: March 07, 2013 at 04:44 PM (#4383105)
Here's an interesting question: say you need a pitcher for one inning. Would you rather have peak Rivera or peak Pedro, assuming that Pedro knows its a short outing and can air it out, a-la '99 ASG.
   48. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: March 07, 2013 at 04:45 PM (#4383107)
Drama doesn't have anything to do with value. But I'll bite: How much added "drama" does a closer bring when his team wins 16 of 17 World Series games over a five-year stretch, as they did from 1996-2000? Were they losing those World Series without him?

Granted he brought a lot of "drama" when Sandy Alomar homered off him in 1997, and when Luis Gonzalez beat him in Game 7 of 2001, and when Millar/Roberts/Meuller beat him in 2004.

Why have they only won once since 2000, if The Greatest Closer In History has so very very much value?


This is exactly right.

The post-season OMG!, drama, clutch argument just doesn't work for Rivera. When he was great, the Yankees were winning in cake walks. When there was actual drama and close series, he blew his fair share.
   49. GregD Posted: March 07, 2013 at 04:49 PM (#4383110)
For me the tricky part of figuring out Rivera is that the variance in relievers' year-to-year performance means:

1) there are a reasonable number of people, including 1-2 sitting beside him, who might match his numbers this year

but

2) no one except him has been able to keep it up for many years

If you had perfect insight, you could find a reliever having as good a year as Rivera almost every year. But the next year, that reliever might be atrocious and Rivera would be Rivera. The variances among relievers' seasons year to year are so large that I don't know how you really account for that exceptional consistency.
   50. Random Transaction Generator Posted: March 07, 2013 at 04:53 PM (#4383114)
Ask the 1993 Phillies, 1997 Indians, 2002 Giants, and the 2011 Rangers if they'd have liked vintage Rivera as their closer...
   51. Nasty Nate Posted: March 07, 2013 at 04:53 PM (#4383115)
The post-season OMG!, drama, clutch argument just doesn't work for Rivera.


140 innings at 0.70 ERA.

When he was great, the Yankees were winning in cake walks. When there was actual drama and close series, he blew his fair share.


Somewhat true, but part of the reason some of those series were cakewalks was because he didn't allow any runs. And you are kind of eliminating any "clutch points" from years in which the Yankees didn't win the world series. With this you are missing the '95 LDS, the '01 LDS, the '03 LCS etc.
   52. jack the seal clubber (on the sidelines of life) Posted: March 07, 2013 at 04:56 PM (#4383116)
Ask the 1993 Phillies, 1997 Indians, 2002 Giants, and the 2011 Rangers if they'd have liked vintage Rivera as their closer...


Or the 2012 Nationals.
   53. Ray (RDP) Posted: March 07, 2013 at 04:57 PM (#4383117)
The post-season OMG!, drama, clutch argument just doesn't work for Rivera. When he was great, the Yankees were winning in cake walks. When there was actual drama and close series, he blew his fair share.


Exactly true.
   54. Blastin Posted: March 07, 2013 at 04:58 PM (#4383120)
140 innings at 0.70 ERA.


Those innings don't matter because they just don't.
   55. BDC Posted: March 07, 2013 at 05:02 PM (#4383121)
The most hilarious part about Rivera's injury was that his job is so easy that the guy sitting next to him in the pen was able to do it as well

As GregD suggests, the point about Rivera is that he did it for 15 years in a row.

To some extent, Ray, it's like you're saying "I don't see what's so great about all those times Hank Aaron hit 44 home runs. Davey Johnson hit 43 one year." :)
   56. GuyM Posted: March 07, 2013 at 05:02 PM (#4383123)
Since when do people salivate over 52 WAR pitchers?

Interestingly, rWAR and fWAR tell very different stories.

rWAR: Rivera 53, Pettitte 55
fWAR: Rivera 39, Pettitte 69
   57. Blastin Posted: March 07, 2013 at 05:03 PM (#4383124)
To some extent, Ray, it's like you're saying "I don't see what's so great about all those times Hank Aaron hit. 44 home runs. Davey Johnson hit 43 one year." :)


Great
   58. jmurph Posted: March 07, 2013 at 05:05 PM (#4383126)
Nobody is ever going to convince you that you should care about something, RDP.


In his defense (not that he needs it from me), Ray (and Snapper) are responding to questions posed early in the thread about his HOF candidacy. It's not like they just jumped in to crap on Rivera for kicks.
   59. SG Posted: March 07, 2013 at 05:06 PM (#4383128)
Interestingly, rWAR and fWAR tell very different stories.


fWAR ignores the fact that Rivera has suppressed opponent BABIP consistently despite playing with horrific defenses behind him throughout his career. Not really that interesting, or useful IMO.
   60. Spectral Posted: March 07, 2013 at 05:07 PM (#4383129)
This is one of the absolute dumbest arguments I've ever seen anyone have about baseball. Everyone on this site is clear on the relative lack of value for closers relative to starters, but only an idiot could be convinced that there's absolutely no reason at all to care about 140 post season innings at a 0.70 ERA.
   61. Bitter Mouse Posted: March 07, 2013 at 05:07 PM (#4383130)
He did what he was asked to do better than anyone ever has before. That role happens to be less valuable than other roles.

I think he is HoF worthy, and I refuse to give the BBWA more power, so I don't care first ballot/unanymous/what have you. For what it is worth I don't think a reliver can be "Inner Circle", but if one could it is obviously him.
   62. Ray (RDP) Posted: March 07, 2013 at 05:08 PM (#4383131)
As GregD suggests, the point about Rivera is that he did it for 15 years in a row.

To some extent, Ray, it's like you're saying "I don't see what's so great about all those times Hank Aaron hit 44 home runs. Davey Johnson hit 43 one year." :)


This is a fair point. At the same time, it is extraordinarily easier to find a reliever who will post a 200 ERA+ than it is to find an OF who will hit 44 home runs or post a 155 OPS+.
   63. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: March 07, 2013 at 05:09 PM (#4383132)
rWAR: Rivera 53, Pettitte 55
fWAR: Rivera 39, Pettitte 69
That's like 90% the obvious, right? DIPS + Leverage?
   64. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: March 07, 2013 at 05:10 PM (#4383134)
For what it is worth I don't think a reliver can be "Inner Circle", but if one could it is obviously him.
I'll still take Wilhelm. Rivera's second, off the top of my head, which is amazing given the strictly limited ceiling on individual reliever value in the modern game.
   65. Morph Posted: March 07, 2013 at 05:10 PM (#4383135)
Do the Sox come near winning the '04 ALCS without Foulke? How much money did the Red Sox spend on Foulke after the closer by committee approach in 2003? Epstein and CO. seemed to reach the conclusion that a quality closer is a valuable commodity.

Good closers are replaceable, great closers (even if temporarily great) are extremely valuable pieces to a baseball team.

   66. Spectral Posted: March 07, 2013 at 05:11 PM (#4383138)
At the same time, it is extraordinarily easier to find a reliever who will post a 200 ERA+ than it is to find an OF who will hit 44 home runs or post a 155 OPS+.


Given the relative inconsistency of relievers, I'd say you have a better chance of guessing which batters will post those lines than relievers this year. Of course the batter's more valuable than the reliever, there's absolutely no one here arguing that. A consistently dominant reliever is likely more rare than a consistently excellent batter.
   67. Bitter Mouse Posted: March 07, 2013 at 05:12 PM (#4383139)
I'll still take Wilhelm.


I was discounting that as a different beast entirely, but your point stands.
   68. Nasty Nate Posted: March 07, 2013 at 05:13 PM (#4383140)
When he was great, the Yankees were winning in cake walks. When there was actual drama and close series, he blew his fair share.


To claim "his fair share," you have to include 2004 ALCS game 4. But if he converts, it gets put into the "cakewalk" category. You're kind of trying to have it both ways. E.G. This way of thinking would give him more postseason credit if he blew some of the close games in the 2000 world series but saved game 7 even though he would have had a worse postseason than what actually happened.
   69. GuyM Posted: March 07, 2013 at 05:14 PM (#4383141)
rWAR: Rivera 53, Pettitte 55
fWAR: Rivera 39, Pettitte 69
That's like 90% the obvious, right? DIPS + Leverage?

I assume so. Personally, I think fWAR is wrong on DIPS, but right on leverage (assuming I'm right in remembering that they use Tango's chained replacement level approach for relievers). Not sure where that nets out, but probably somewhere in the 45-48 WAR range.
   70. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: March 07, 2013 at 05:14 PM (#4383142)
but only an idiot could be convinced that there's absolutely no reason at all to care about 140 post season innings at a 0.70 ERA.

No one said not to care. What I (and Ray) are saying is that the otherwordly pitching didn't actually contribute very much to the Yankees winning Championships. The years they won, they typically blew everyone away, and the years they lost close series are the years Rivera allowed his handful of runs.

If the Yankees had the normal procession of above closers you'd expect the highest payroll team to have, over the last 15 years instead of Rivera, they would most likely have exactly the same number of Championships. That's all I'm saying.
   71. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: March 07, 2013 at 05:15 PM (#4383144)
To claim "his fair share," you have to include 2004 ALCS game 4. But if he converts, it gets put into the "cakewalk" category. You're kind of trying to have it both ways.

He blew it the next night too.
   72. Ray (RDP) Posted: March 07, 2013 at 05:17 PM (#4383147)
Given the relative inconsistency of relievers, I'd say you have a better chance of guessing which batters will post those lines than relievers this year.


The point was not how well you could predict each of the two but was the scarcity of the two.
   73. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: March 07, 2013 at 05:17 PM (#4383148)
rWAR: Rivera 53, Pettitte 55
fWAR: Rivera 39, Pettitte 69


Great comparison.

If you're drafting players with 100% foresight, and 20 y.o. Rivera and Pettitte are available, who do you take?

I take Pettitte every time. Hell, I take 5 of him to fill my rotation before I draft Rivera. It's just not that hard to find very good relievers.
   74. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: March 07, 2013 at 05:19 PM (#4383149)
It's amazing to me to see Red Sox fans in this thread not understanding the value of a closer/late inning reliever. Do the Sox come near winning the '04 ALCS without Foulke? How much money did the Red Sox spend on Foulke after the closer by committee approach in 2003? Epstein and CO. seemed to reach the conclusion that a quality closer is a valuable commodity.
Other than RDP, whose opinions on baseball don't seem particularly defined by his fandom, who's doing this?

For me - and perhaps this qualifies for you as "not understanding"? - closers are valuable, but that value is limited relative to guys who play more innings. To be a worthy Hall of Famer as a closer, you have to be the best closer of the last three decades. To be a worthy Hall of Famer as a starter or a third baseman, you can be worse than dozens of guys from the last few decades.
   75. Nasty Nate Posted: March 07, 2013 at 05:19 PM (#4383150)

He blew it the next night too.


The point still stands because it would have been a 4-1 series win and thus a "cake-walk".
   76. Spectral Posted: March 07, 2013 at 05:19 PM (#4383151)
No one said not to care. What I (and Ray) are saying is that the otherwordly pitching didn't actually contribute very much to the Yankees winning Championships. The years they won, they typically blew everyone away, and the years they lost close series are the years Rivera allowed his handful of runs.


This line of thinking implies that excellence only has value if it can be explicitly shown that it decided individual games.

If the Yankees had the normal procession of above closers you'd expect the highest payroll team to have, over the last 15 years instead of Rivera, they would most likely have exactly the same number of Championships. That's all I'm saying.


I don't get the point here. Is this supposed to diminish appreciation of him? Isn't the same thing basically true for nearly every player that's ever played?
   77. Morph Posted: March 07, 2013 at 05:24 PM (#4383154)
No one said not to care. What I (and Ray) are saying is that the otherwordly pitching didn't actually contribute very much to the Yankees winning Championships. The years they won, they typically blew everyone away, and the years they lost close series are the years Rivera allowed his handful of runs.


This is incorrect. Off the top of my head I remember Rivera pitching well in the '01 LDS, which the Yankees were behind in 2-0, the '03 ALCS, and throughout the '96 playoffs, when the Yankees were not heavy favorites.

2001 ALDS, Rivera closes a 1-0 lead, with his team down two games to none in the series, on the road. Along the way he retires Johnny Damon, Miguel Tejada, Jason Giambi, and Eric Chavez. Cakewalk! No pressure! In game five he has another two inning save, protecting a two run lead. Sounds like a breeze. 2003 ALCS, game three, protected a one run lead over the last two innings on the road. Walk in the park. La de da. I probably could name about ten more of these, but whatever. It's not hard to puncture a narrative that suggests Rivera resting in a hammock, being fanned, and lazily closing out low pressure playoff games.

74. You're right, I edited out 'Red Sox fans' from that post. I get a little emotional when defending Mo.
   78. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: March 07, 2013 at 05:25 PM (#4383155)
I don't get the point here. Is this supposed to diminish appreciation of him? Isn't the same thing basically true for nearly every player that's ever played?

Emphatically no.

If the Yankees didn't have Jeter, or Bernie Williams, it would have been very difficult or very expensive to replace that production at SS or CF. At closer, you just move your next best RP in.

Again, look at last year. They lost Rivera, and it didn't matter a bit.

Closer is different than every other position b/c you are trying to assemble 6 or 7 good RP, and they are wildly unpredictable. Losing one of them isn't a big deal, b/c you can just move one of the over performing guys up from lower leverage roles.

There's no equivalence at other positions. The best RP in a given season often turn out to have been available very cheaply (see Rodney, Fernando). That just doesn't happen at SS or CF.
   79. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: March 07, 2013 at 05:26 PM (#4383157)
2001 ALDS, Rivera closes a 1-0 lead, with his team down two games to none in the series, on the road. Along the way he retires Johnny Damon, Miguel Tejada, Jason Giambi, and Eric Chavez. Cakewalk! No pressure! In game five he has another two inning save, protecting a two run lead. Sounds like a breeze. 2003 ALCS, game three, protected a one run lead over the last two innings on the road. Walk in the park. La de da. I probably could name about ten more of these, but whatever. It's not hard to puncture a narrative that suggests Rivera resting in a hammock, being fanned, and lazily closing out low pressure playoff games.

They lost that Championship on a Rivera blown save.

I never said his performance didn't contribute to winning games or series. I specified Championships.

   80. Bitter Mouse Posted: March 07, 2013 at 05:27 PM (#4383158)
I don't get the point here.


It does seem odd. If people talk about player X having a great series and helping the team win it is small sample size and never clutch or anythign like it. Now it is well he was only great when they didn't need him anyway and ignoring the sustained excellence.

The whole argument seems like folks determined to argue against conventional wisdom or something.
   81. Nasty Nate Posted: March 07, 2013 at 05:28 PM (#4383160)
I don't get the point here. Is this supposed to diminish appreciation of him? Isn't the same thing basically true for nearly every player that's ever played?


E.G. Greg Maddux: Considering that in 1995 they won the division by 20 games, and that in the only non-cakewalk postseason series they played he had one good start and one bad start, If the Braves had the normal procession of SP you'd expect them to have from 1993-2003 instead of Maddux, they would most likely have exactly the same number of Championships.
   82. John Northey Posted: March 07, 2013 at 05:30 PM (#4383163)
fWAR seems pretty screwy compared to rWAR with Pettitte and Rivera. Pettitte seems like a marginal HOF to most I'd think but fWAR says he should be a HOF lock at 69 WAR. Doing the inning discount and not factoring in leverage would keep Rivera near Pettitte level, that makes sense as Rivera was amazing but limited in innings.

Rivera has a 206 ERA+ in 1219 2/3 IP. Pettitte is at 117 over 3130 2/3 IP. So a spread of 1911 IP allowing 1041 runs or a 4.90 ERA which is basically Jamey Wright (4.89 ERA over 1896 IP - although a big part was in Colorado so his ERA+ is better than it would be if he did that in NY). Is that worth 2 WAR or 30 WAR? Wright is worth 7.3 rWAR and 15.4 fWAR in his career so I'd say rWAR is closer to the true spread than fWAR.
   83. smileyy Posted: March 07, 2013 at 05:30 PM (#4383164)
At the same time, it is extraordinarily easier to find a reliever who will post a 200 ERA+ than it is to find an OF who will hit 44 home runs or post a 155 OPS+.


Are there any metrics that capture how available and how predictable these performances are from the FA market or from a player development pipeline? What does a "replacement-level" closer season look like?
   84. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: March 07, 2013 at 05:33 PM (#4383169)
E.G. Greg Maddux: Considering that in 1995 they won the division by 20 games, and that in the only non-cakewalk postseason series they played he had one good start and one bad start, If the Braves had the normal procession of SP you'd expect them to havefrom 1993-2003 instead of Maddux, they would most likely have exactly the same number of Championships.

The difference is that Maddux's value is not based on leverage, and "clutch" and post-season stats.

If Rivera had put up the same 1200 IP and ERA+ over 10 injury plagued seasons as a SP, he'd have 30 WAR and wouldn't been in HoF discussions, except in a Doc Gooden, "what might have been" sort of way.
   85. RB in NYC (Now Semi-Retired from BBTF) Posted: March 07, 2013 at 05:33 PM (#4383170)
He blew it the next night too.
This is a minor point, but--as possibly Rivera's biggest fanboy here--it's a pet peeve of mine. Rivera came in to that game in the 8th inning, 1st-and-3rd, no one out, Yankees leading by one. He gave up a SF, G3 and K. The next inning was 1B (CS), 6-3, F8. He got tagged with a BS, but his WPA for the game was actually positive (.307). That's not exactly "blowing" it in the Grand Billy Wagner/Trevor Hoffman Postseason Style.

Also, as possibly Rivera's biggest fanboy here, this makes me very sad.
   86. Gonfalon Bubble Posted: March 07, 2013 at 05:35 PM (#4383174)
The Yankees replaced Rivera without a hitch in 2012. The trick will be doing it from 2013-2028.

If only there were some option between He Made Holy The Mound Upon Which He Stood and Closers Are Just Glorified Pinch Runners.
   87. Spectral Posted: March 07, 2013 at 05:36 PM (#4383178)
If the Yankees didn't have Jeter, or Bernie Williams, it would have been very difficult or very expensive to replace that production at SS or CF. At closer, you just move your next best RP in.


Are you asserting that you're reasonably sure the Yankees would have won less titles if Williams had gone down with a career ender and they'd had to pay for a replacement? I'm not buying it as a claim, and I'm especially not buying the level of certainty that's being expressed that Rivera was meaningless for titles, while a 5-win CF on a team with a nearly limitless budget was essential.

Closer is different than every other position b/c you are trying to assemble 6 or 7 good RP, and they are wildly unpredictable. Losing one of them isn't a big deal, b/c you can just move one of the over performing guys up from lower leverage roles.


This seems more or less true for starting pitchers and positions of low defensive value as well.

There's no equivalence at other positions. The best RP in a given season often turn out to have been available very cheaply (see Rodney, Fernando). That just doesn't happen at SS or CF.


This is a weird argument. Positional uncertainty doesn't seem like a good reason to downgrade the value of a guy that gave absolute certainty. You can throw crap at the wall and hope it sticks with bullpens, but it's actually harder to just throw money at bullpen problems and expect them to be solved because of that uncertainty.

Again though, there's not a person (that I've seen) here arguing that Rivera was strictly more valuable than Jeter or Williams. It's just fairly hard to see how that's relevant to the conversation.
   88. Blastin Posted: March 07, 2013 at 05:37 PM (#4383180)
Also, as possibly Rivera's biggest fanboy here, this makes me very sad.


Me too.
   89. Nasty Nate Posted: March 07, 2013 at 05:38 PM (#4383182)
The difference is that Maddux's value is not based on leverage, and "clutch" and post-season stats.


True (I think the paragraph is silly for both Maddux and Rivera), but if you were limiting to championships, then the Braves had a "cake-walk" to win the division and the pennant that year.
   90. Blastin Posted: March 07, 2013 at 05:39 PM (#4383184)
2013-2028


Well, I think you mean 2014.

He's announcing that this is his last year.
   91. Spectral Posted: March 07, 2013 at 05:40 PM (#4383186)
If only there were some option between He Made Holy The Mound Upon Which He Stood and Closers Are Just Glorified Pinch Runners.


I think there is, and I think most people outside of a certain ilk of sportswriter and fan has basically arrived there. Everyone that I know that follows baseball was immensely impressed by Kimbrel's 2012 performance, yet also shrugged at it when it comes to actual value. I think the same can be said with regard to Rivera's career; he's been utterly dominant, his postseason numbers are staggering, and yet he's not nearly as valuable as a dominant starting pitcher. The only hitch seems to be when people arrive at the conclusion that value is the beginning and end of a conversation on what makes a player interesting or even HoF worthy.
   92. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: March 07, 2013 at 05:40 PM (#4383187)
Again though, there's not a person (that I've seen) here arguing that Rivera was strictly more valuable than Jeter or Williams. It's just fairly hard to see how that's relevant to the conversation.

People are talking about Rivera as a first-ballot HoF, and Bernie didn't last one ballot.

So, clearly some people think Rivera was more valuable than Williams.

Are you asserting that you're reasonably sure the Yankees would have won less titles if Williams had gone down with a career ender and they'd had to pay for a replacement? I'm not buying it as a claim, and I'm especially not buying the level of certainty that's being expressed that Rivera was meaningless for titles, while a 5-win CF on a team with a nearly limitless budget was essential.

I'm saying it's quite likey they win fewer. How often are 5 WAR CFs even available?
   93. Gonfalon Bubble Posted: March 07, 2013 at 05:42 PM (#4383190)
Well, I think you mean 2014.
He's announcing that this is his last year.


No, I saw a credible rumor tweet that Rivera will serve a 50-game suspension for steroids, and then a 100-game suspension for cyborg circuitry.
   94. Spectral Posted: March 07, 2013 at 05:42 PM (#4383191)
True (I think the paragraph is silly for both Maddux and Rivera), but if you were limiting to championships, then the Braves had a "cake-walk" to win the division and the pennant that year.


It really is a weird conversation to be having here, isn't it? Pretty much everyone here knows that clutchiness doesn't win titles, yet the argument seems to be that if an impressive performance isn't the difference maker for winning a title, it's not really that big of a deal. That sure makes various Cardinals more "valuable" than I ever would have thought.
   95. Athletic Supporter can feel the slow rot Posted: March 07, 2013 at 05:44 PM (#4383196)
WAR is a really dumb way to look at HoF. Hall of Famers should be evaluated against (at worst) an average player, not replacement level. To say that any seasons above replacement level improve your HoF case is silly.
   96. Slivers of Maranville descends into chaos (SdeB) Posted: March 07, 2013 at 05:45 PM (#4383198)

People are talking about Rivera as a first-ballot HoF, and Bernie didn't last one ballot.

So, clearly some people think Rivera was more valuable than Williams.


Only if one is voting based solely on player value.
   97. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: March 07, 2013 at 05:45 PM (#4383199)
WAR is a really dumb way to look at HoF. Hall of Famers should be evaluated against (at worst) an average player, not replacement level. To say that any seasons above replacement level improve your HoF case is silly.

That would crush Rivera's case. The average closer is very, very good.
   98. Nasty Nate Posted: March 07, 2013 at 05:46 PM (#4383200)
I never said his performance didn't contribute to winning games or series. I specified Championships.


This eliminates Fisk, Francisco Cabrera, and Bobby Thompson from having big mythical clutch moments.
   99. Nasty Nate Posted: March 07, 2013 at 05:47 PM (#4383204)
That would crush Rivera's case. The average closer is very, very good.


He would be compared to the average reliever (not closer), right? Otherwise you would compare the Schillings of the world to other "aces" only and the Palmeiros to other cleanup hitters.
   100. Spectral Posted: March 07, 2013 at 05:49 PM (#4383209)
People are talking about Rivera as a first-ballot HoF, and Bernie didn't last one ballot.
So, clearly some people think Rivera was more valuable than Williams.

One does not follow from the other. The HoF isn't a WAR contest, and not many people think it should be. Value's a starting point and tells most of the story for most players, but it'd be a real outlier of an argument to claim there's nothing at all that's different about Rivera.
I'm saying it's quite likey they win fewer.

This is asserted without strong evidence. You'd have a hell of a time demonstrating that Williams provided the extra oomph needed to win a title that wouldn't have come from whatever free agent they could have come by.
How often are 5 WAR CFs even available?

About an order of magnitude more frequently than 206 ERA+ relievers that perform at nearly the same level every year.
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