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ESPN’s Sunday Conversation: Mariano

Posted by: Peter Abraham - Posted in Misc on Jun 26, 2009 Print This Post Print This Post | Email This Post Email This Post

Mariano Rivera taped ESPN’s Sunday Coversation yesterday. It’ll be on the 11 p.m. Sunday edition of SportsCenter.

Mo was asked about Jonathan Papelbon’s statement (since retracted) that he would play for the Yankees.

“If he wants to do that, he’ll have to wait for me to retire,” Rivera said. “You know, then I think he has a shot at that. Besides that, he don’t have a shot at that.”

On PEDs: “The reason why I’m laughing is because I don’t even drink coffee. And if I don’t drink coffee, I would never put in my mind or think to put that in my body. If the talent that God has given me is not enough, well, I’ll have to quit. When I leave this game I know deep in my mind, deep in my heart that I was clean.”

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57 Responses to “ESPN’s Sunday Conversation: Mariano”

  1. Carl June 26th, 2009 at 9:05 am

    Powerful words from the GOAT

  2. Doreen June 26th, 2009 at 9:10 am

    Mariano. Yankees fans and baseball fans of this era are truly fortunate to witness his career.

    Simple statement on PEDs really says it all.

  3. Casanova Wong June 26th, 2009 at 9:14 am

    Please never retire. I’m scared for life after MO.

  4. Cash is King June 26th, 2009 at 9:15 am

    Great comments by Mo.

  5. Yankees June 26th, 2009 at 9:19 am

    surprised at a couple of things. To think that the Yankees were prepared to play Swisher in CF or first base regularly before getting Tex is bad scouting.
    Matsui playing the field? Matt Stairs still plays RF for the Phillies and he is awful. How many balls get hit into the OF? Keep in mind Matsui would probably be lifted after the 7th for defense and you`d at least get two at bats out of him.
    The Gardner over Melky thing in CF is puzzling. Defensively Melky is better

  6. Bronx Jeers June 26th, 2009 at 9:23 am

    At this point in the PED era, I am always skeptical when a player comes out with a “statement of cleanliness”. But there are certain players who you just know in your heart of hearts that they are telling the truth.

    Mariano is at the top of that list.

    From previous:

    ” Braves pitcher Jeff Bennett broke a bone in his left (non-pitching) hand when he punched a door on Wednesday night after giving up A-Rod’s two-run single in the sixth inning. But what you might not have heard is that Bennett pushed the broken bone back into place and pitched the seventh inning”

    In related news, Brett Tomko, after relinquishing the Yankee lead on 2 Brave home-runs in consecutive innings, went to the clubhouse and ferociously ate a sandwich. Apparently he was so upset that he didn’t even bother to utilize a napkin when a dab of mustard appeared on his upper lip.

  7. Mark June 26th, 2009 at 9:26 am

    Nice profile of Jeter here on his 35th birthday !

    http://www.findingdulcinea.com.....jeter.html

  8. Hokiehill June 26th, 2009 at 9:27 am

    Yankees…it depends which attributes you place more weight on as far as OF defense goes…IMO Gardner has better speed and has started to take better breaks on fly balls while the Melk Man has a stronger arm…there is of course the fact that Gardner has been the only consistant hitter through the Yankees’ slump and Melky has the flu…Personally I prefer the Damon/Gardner/Melky outfield with Melky playing right over Swish…when you want to get Swish in there trade off between Melky and Gardner depending on who has the hot stick.

  9. Ken June 26th, 2009 at 9:28 am

    As I often do I left YES on well after the game while I worked on other stuff around the house, when Steiner Sports had a almost infomercial about selling old Yankee Stadium memorabilia. They asked Mo what he wanted from the stadium, he said the pitching rubber, and they were like maybe we can negotiate that, and with a serious face and without missing a beat he said, “there will be no negotiating, I am taking the pitching rubber,” it was the funniest thing I have seen in weeks.

  10. Fan Interference June 26th, 2009 at 9:29 am

    Mo is da man.

    I have to disagree with Cashman that all of the answers are here. I think the pen has been answered with Aceves, Bruney & Hughes. I would leave Hughes in the pen at this point , since he’s been so effective. I would like for us to pick up another starter as insurance for Wang, and a bat on the bench.

    People might argue about Hughes to the rotation, if Wang tanks, but I don’t care for what’s at Scranton right now. A cast of not ready for prime time players.

  11. Boston Dave 2.0 - the kinder gentler version June 26th, 2009 at 9:32 am

    greatest ever.

    indisputable.

  12. Boogie Down Bob June 26th, 2009 at 9:32 am

    Glad to see Smoltz got ripped last night. I love, however, that ESPN and the Boston media somehow managed to turn his awful performance last night into a positive, and not state the obvious that he’s nothing more than a 42 year old man coming off of major shoulder surgery.

  13. Erica - newly OPPC June 26th, 2009 at 9:33 am

    One word to describe Mariano Rivera: Master

    Everything is so perfectly said

  14. Fan Interference June 26th, 2009 at 9:34 am

    “Glad to see Smoltz got ripped last night. I love, however, that ESPN and the Boston media somehow managed to turn his awful performance last night into a positive, and not state the obvious that he’s nothing more than a 42 year old man coming off of major shoulder surgery.”

    The one thing I took out of seeing Smoltz is that he’s looking old.

  15. Boogie Down Bob June 26th, 2009 at 9:36 am

    Fan,

    If you read the articles on ESPN and Boston.com, you’d think they just added another Josh Beckett type to their staff.

    The lack of objectivity is sickening.

  16. Vader June 26th, 2009 at 9:36 am

    Boogie Down Bob…what the Boston media or ESPN is not fair and balanced?…and we are to believe the some how every year around the ASB one of their pitchers goes on the DL with a mysterious injury too???

  17. Boogie Down Bob June 26th, 2009 at 9:37 am

    But I live and work in Boston, and its awesome to hear all the Red Sox fans who were talking up Smoltz’s return yesterday very quiet about his performance.

  18. Ramey June 26th, 2009 at 9:37 am

    Smoltz outside of that first inning looked pretty decent for a 42 year old coming off major surgery. He had velocity, he had unbelievable movement on his secondary pitches, the only problem he had initially was locating his pitches, which got better as the game wore on. He’s probably 3 weeks away from really settling in and helping the Sox

  19. NO HYPE June 26th, 2009 at 9:37 am

    I would laugh so hard if Papsmear came over to the Yankees.

  20. Yankees June 26th, 2009 at 9:37 am

    agree hokie, I like that OF better too. I just think Girardi should have gotten Matsui in there. I hate it when Girardi starts Melky in CF then bring Gardner (who is playing well) into the game and moves Melky to RF. I guess its Melkys arm.
    This weekend I don`t want to hear a thing. The Yankees match up better at EVERY position including on the mound in all three games vs. Mets. The only place where the Mets have an edge is at 3B since Wright is hitting and Arod is still slumping. If the Yanks don`t take two of three its ridiculous. Bad enough they have been underachieving all year

  21. Robbykid June 26th, 2009 at 9:37 am

    Right now, all past put behind:

    Who would you rather have close: Papelbon or Rivera?

  22. Fan Interference June 26th, 2009 at 9:38 am

    Yanks need to take at least two of three this weekend.

  23. ditmars1929 June 26th, 2009 at 9:39 am

    Nothing surprises me anymore regarding who’s used PEDs, but if it ever came out that Rivera or Jeter did, that would crush me.

    I’ve not seen Smotlz pitch, because even though I’m not a Braves fan, I don’t think I could take the sight of him in that hideous Boston uniform.

  24. Boogie Down Bob June 26th, 2009 at 9:40 am

    Robby,

    Rivera in a landslide. Papelbon is an overrated idiot.

  25. Boogie Down Bob June 26th, 2009 at 9:42 am

    So, with the news about Xavier Nady possibly suffering a season ending setback, anyone think the Yankees might try to land Mark DeRosa as an extra bat/A-Rod insurance?

  26. Boston Dave 2.0 - the kinder gentler version June 26th, 2009 at 9:42 am

    “I love, however, that ESPN and the Boston media somehow managed to turn his awful performance last night into a positive”

    ——–

    Boogie Down,

    I was anxious to see him pitch last night and I was not impressed. That’s not to say he won’t improve.

    Of his 92 pitches, of course there were some very good ones. If ESPN wants to isolate those select few and show only those, well, they can do that.

    I watched Brad Penny’s first few starts too and he looked average. He’s improved somewhat and has been good for them.

    If Smoltz can do the same, he’ll be a nice back of the rotation starter. But until he does improve, or stay healthy, I’m not worried at all…

    even if ESPN wants to tell me he’s still one of the best pitchers in baseball.

    I know what I saw.

  27. Boogie Down Bob June 26th, 2009 at 9:44 am

    Boston,

    I agree with you. I’m sure he’ll improve and will become a serviceable starter.

    I just can’t stand how the media make him out to be like he’s this high end, top of the rotation starter.

  28. Boston Dave 2.0 - the kinder gentler version June 26th, 2009 at 9:44 am

    “Smoltz outside of that first inning looked pretty decent for a 42 year old coming off major surgery. ”

    ——-

    LOL

    pretty decent for an old man coming off major surgery on his pitching shoulder…

    that’s a ringing endorsement if I ever heard one.

    I have a used car to sell you.

  29. Boogie Down Bob June 26th, 2009 at 9:47 am

    Finally, someone from ESPN who has a clue about A-Rod.

    http://sports.espn.go.com/mlb/notebook?page=bbtn

  30. Fran (the original) and OPPC member June 26th, 2009 at 9:48 am

    Actually I saw some of Smoltz’s post game news conference on ESPN News and he was saying that he was pretty pleased for his first outing and that he knows he’ll get better.

  31. S.A.--It's a marathon, not a sprint June 26th, 2009 at 9:49 am

    Right now, all past put behind:

    Who would you rather have close: Papelbon or Rivera?

    =========================================

    Right this very second, Rivera.

  32. Bronx Jeers June 26th, 2009 at 9:50 am

    Robby,

    Right now, all past put behind:

    It’s still Mo.

    You know both these guys blow saves.

    Actually this year they’re identical in saves/opps, 17 for 18.

    Papelbon is a very good closer. But we’ll have to wait until about 2019 to really compare their careers.

  33. Josh from NC June 26th, 2009 at 9:50 am

    On the newest 2k Sports MLB video game, they have smoltz as their number one starter with the highest rating lol

  34. Fran (the original) and OPPC member June 26th, 2009 at 9:50 am

    It is pouring right now in Queens but it is supposed to clear up.

  35. Steve B June 26th, 2009 at 9:50 am

    “Glad to see Smoltz got ripped last night.”

    Watched that back last night after the Yankees wrapped up. He wasn’t awful, BD Bob. Looked a little jittery in the 1st, with an HBP and walk. Allowed 6 baserunners and 4 runs and a couple of the hits were really stung. Settled in pretty well after that. Only allowed 3 baserunners over the last 4 innings he pithed and retired the last 8 hitters he faced. Surprisingly good velocity. 92-ish on his fastball. One thing he couldn’t do is command his slider, which was probably his most devastating pitch during his salad days. Couldn’t throw it for strikes and when he did, he left it a little up. If he get’s that pitch under control, he may help them some.

  36. Rishi June 26th, 2009 at 9:51 am

    Right now, all past put behind:

    Who would you rather have close: Papelbon or Rivera?

    ooooooooooooooooooo

    first thing that came to mind was “to close baseball games or participate in a Lord of the Dance dance-off” :)

  37. Rishi June 26th, 2009 at 9:52 am

    new post

  38. Steve B June 26th, 2009 at 9:53 am

    “Papelbon is an overrated idiot.”

    Have to disagree. He’s not overrated.

  39. MGUMPHER June 26th, 2009 at 9:54 am

    “Right now, all past put behind:

    Who would you rather have close: Papelbon or Rivera?

    =========================================

    Right this very second, Rivera.”

    There is no separating the “past” from what the player is. I can’t stand Papelbon. He is a turd and will probably not have a career anything like Mariano’s has been. A less effective Mo trumps Papelbon any day.

  40. S.A.--It's a marathon, not a sprint June 26th, 2009 at 9:56 am

    So the Knicks yesterday.. :|

  41. Boogie Down Bob June 26th, 2009 at 9:58 am

    Steve B,

    Yes he is. Wait til 2011 when his shoulder is trash and the Sox don’t re-sign him and he’s bouncing around from team to team.

    Even Eric Gagne had his moment in the sun.

  42. Boogie Down Bob June 26th, 2009 at 9:58 am

    So John Smoltz Is Just German for Daisuke Matsuzaka

  43. The Ghost June 26th, 2009 at 9:59 am

    Mariano is the greatest athlete I have ever witnessed. I say this not because his amazing success in the most stressful situation in sports but because of the character and grace he shows when he does not come through. No athlete has taught me more about sports and what it means to be a sportsman. My favorite quote from Mariano Rivera came after he gave up a 2 run homer to blow a save only to then to see a teammate win it with another 2 run homer. He was asked about the emotional roller coaster of the two moments and he replied: “My emotions will always be the same, we have to learn to lose and to win.” In that seemingly simple line he gave me the basis of which I have taught my two sons about sports and about life. He’s not just a great closer, he’s a philosopher poet.

  44. Patrick June 26th, 2009 at 10:03 am

    Completely unrelated but cool thing about John Smoltz. He is a phenomenal golfer. Tiger Woods said that Smoltz is the best golfer not on the PGA tour. He told a story about how him and Smoltz have played together, Tiger shot a 63 and Smoltz still won money from him.

    Bottom line is Smoltz is a world class athlete, if anyone can come back from shoulder surgery at age 42 it’s him.

  45. PruBelongs June 26th, 2009 at 10:06 am

    Gardner 115 chances, 1 error, 3 assists
    Cabrera 124 chances, 2 errors, 1 assist

    I know one of Cabrera’s errors was the costly throwing error last weekend. Not sure about the other.

  46. Yankees June 26th, 2009 at 10:06 am

    Rivera is as good mentally as he is physically and thats what makes him who he is. He thrives under pressure is confident and fearless

  47. Steve B June 26th, 2009 at 10:08 am

    “Yes he is. Wait til 2011 when his shoulder is trash and the Sox don’t re-sign him and he’s bouncing around from team to team.”

    We’re not talking about 2011. We’re talking about now. He’s been one of the 3-4 best closers in the game over the past few seasons.

    Further, my bigger point was agreeing that he’s an idiot.

  48. Boogie Down Bob June 26th, 2009 at 10:09 am

    Patrick,

    I’ve heard that as well, and I’m not doubting his competitive spirit. However, I don’t think many people realize how difficult it is to rehab from a torn labrum in your shoulder.

    I’ve had the surgery myself, and while I’m not John Smoltz, I can attest to the fact that no matter how much you strengthen and rehab it, it’s never quite the same after you have that surgery.

    Additionally, this isn’t the first time he’s had surgery as well. Bottom line, he’s not going to be a difference maker for them, IMO

  49. Jon Ringland June 26th, 2009 at 10:19 am

    Atta boy, Mo. Tell it like it is!

  50. The Ghost June 26th, 2009 at 10:20 am

    Gardner 115 chances, 1 error, 3 assists
    Cabrera 124 chances, 2 errors, 1 assist

    I know one of Cabrera’s errors was the costly throwing error last weekend. Not sure about the other.

    ==============

    Cabrera has had subpar accuracy this year throwing the ball, but a bigger part of the reason for his low assist total is the immense respect his arm receives by opposing runners. No one takes an extra base on him anymore. They really should formulate a stat on how many times a runner decides it’s not worth it to risk the extra base in a 50/50 situation. I guarantee you that no runner this year has stopped in their tracks on Gardner or Damon’s arms. That alone is worth something.

  51. bodhisattva - Destiny Wears Pinstripes June 26th, 2009 at 10:20 am

    Yankees
    June 26th, 2009 at 9:19 am
    surprised at a couple of things. To think that the Yankees were prepared to play Swisher in CF or first base regularly before getting Tex is bad scouting.
    ========

    I don’t know why this notion persists, because Cashman has refuted it often enough. There was NEVER an intention to use Swisher as a CF, outside of an emergency spot once in a blue moon:

    http://yankees.lhblogs.com/200.....sher-deal/

    What happened was every poster on earth was screaming for Swisher to play the position if it came down to Swisher vs. Melky.

    This is why I put no stock into many people’s opinions regarding outfield defense. For some reason, there are a good number of people floating around out there in the blogosphere and forums who have entirely the wrong notions about outfield defense.

    In fact, they are emphatic about their misguided notions. Particularly, some think you can swap in a corner outfielder to play CF and he won’t miss a beat. Swisher, of course, would d-r-o-w-n in centerfield. He would drown.

    The conclusion, I think, that he could actually play there competently, fed off another entirely false notion, nurtured by neophytes in the media and blogosphere – for people assume if you have a blog or a byline you must know what you’re talking about.

    That false notion is that Melky has no range, gets bad jumps, and has only an arm to offer. I am personally done addressing this because it’s useless to explain what either you can or cannot see with your own eyes.

    Yankees
    June 26th, 2009 at 9:19 amThe Gardner over Melky thing in CF is puzzling. Defensively Melky is better
    ========

    You are right, but you will never persuade people who think blazing speed trumps instinct.

    I also think that the Yankees and we fans are SO starved for speed and “athleticism” that Gardner has become a symbol of what we have lacked.

    Indeed, when he gets on base, he provides a weapon we just haven’t had. It’s assumed that his outfield defense is as efficient as his baserunning, however, and that is just not true.

    Even the Yankees have conceded this: he’s no longer playing shallow, because they know that his speed is tremendous going coast to coast, but doesn’t really lend a plus dimension going back to the wall – which is what a true plus CF can do; Gardner can’t really cheat going back – only coming in.

  52. bodhisattva - Destiny Wears Pinstripes June 26th, 2009 at 10:28 am

    My favorite quote from Mariano Rivera came after he gave up a 2 run homer to blow a save only to then to see a teammate win it with another 2 run homer. He was asked about the emotional roller coaster of the two moments and he replied: “My emotions will always be the same, we have to learn to lose and to win.” In that seemingly simple line he gave me the basis of which I have taught my two sons about sports and about life. He’s not just a great closer, he’s a philosopher poet.
    =======

    Well said.

    Mariano expresses true humility – not the false “aw shucks” kind – in his humility lies his strength; he knows all he has comes from Source and he never loses sight of that.

    Do you remember when we lost in 2001 and Rivera said

    ..but we had to lose. Everything happens for a reason. Had we won (Enrico Wilson) would have stayed for the celebration party, and would have been on that doomed flight to the DR from Queens.

    I’m paraphrasing, of course.

    I always thought that throw was so errant that he made to 2B….higher power speaking through him?

    I know people don’t want to hear that, because that loss was heart-breaking….but Rivera is hardly a flaky new age drone; he knows what matters most, and that’s why in his humility, he is indomitable. :D

  53. sab June 26th, 2009 at 10:40 am

    PruBelongs
    June 26th, 2009 at 10:06 am
    Gardner 115 chances, 1 error, 3 assists
    Cabrera 124 chances, 2 errors, 1 assist

    I know one of Cabrera’s errors was the costly throwing error last weekend. Not sure about the other.
    ========================================================

    PRU –
    Mclouth
    180 chances, 0 errors, 5 assists – some people were on the blog yesterday saying gardner and melky were better than mclouth…

  54. Truthiness June 26th, 2009 at 10:42 am

    I think the PED whispers about Mo are probably true.

  55. Jimmy June 26th, 2009 at 11:14 am

    “Mariano expresses true humility – not the false “aw shucks” kind – in his humility lies his strength; he knows all he has comes from Source and he never loses sight of that.”

    From “Source?” What is this, The Matrix?

  56. Lauren June 26th, 2009 at 11:47 am

    Did Papelbon really retract that statement?

    He really is a clown. His agent is probably furious with him!

  57. kelley July 2nd, 2009 at 6:28 pm

    I set up my tv to record this interview and it stopped just before Mo started talking. I can’t find the video on ESPN, or anywhere else. Can somebody PLEASE tell me what elase he said besides the Papelbon and PED info listed above by Peter Abraham? Thanks very much.

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