Three of the past four times the Yankees have used Mariano Rivera, they’ve used him for more than three outs.
Before this stretch, Rivera had pitched 54 times this season and gotten more than three outs exactly once.
“You just have to prepare for that; be ready for that situation,” Rivera said. “As for right now, we have to be able to do it. … I’ve been in situations like this before, so there’s no change to anything because I’m not pitching next year or whatever. We just have to do whatever it takes to win.”
Joe Girardi acknowledged a few days ago that he’s willing to use Rivera slightly more than usual because this is his final season, but Girardi’s still not willing to get reckless. We saw that during the Red Sox series when Rivera was completely unavailable after pitching three days in a row. Rivera’s used to regularly pitch multiple innings in the playoffs, and the Yankees are treating these a lot like playoff games.
Their closer seems to want the ball as often as the situation allows.
“I think Mo will give us everything he’s got,” Girardi said. “That’s who he’s been since he’s been here. He’s always had so much heart. He’ll give us everything.”
Associated Press photo