As you could tell from yesterday’s ceremony, there are plenty of people with plenty to say about Mariano Rivera. The video above contains some highlights of the press conference for Joe Torre, Bernie Williams and Jorge Posada talking about Rivera. Below are some additional statements and stories from plenty of names you’re recognize.
“When I think about Mo, the numbers speak for themselves, what he’s done in this game. The way he’s went about his business is something that you wish that everyone could do. I would tell my son or my kids, this is an example about how you’re supposed to go about your work. I’ve always said about Mo, he’s extremely focused on that day, that week, that month, that year, and never short-changes himself; is always prepared. Gives everything he has on a daily basis, and does not let what happens in the game determine who he is as a person. The game is obviously very important to us, but that’s not who you are. It’s what you do. I think Mo reflects that as well as anyone I’ve ever seen.” – Joe Girardi
“You can tell the adjustments of certain hitters. They would come up on the plate, Carlos Baerga hitting right-handed, people using smaller bats. They’d be using white bats all game, and then all of a sudden, a black bat comes out. There are a lot of things that you saw. Standing on one area, and all of a sudden Mariano comes in, and you’re a little further out. A left-handed hitter would get off of the plate a little bit more so the cutter wouldn’t be on his hands. There are a lot of things that they did; adjustments that told me that they were beaten.” – Jorge Posada
“I can’t think of anybody who could have more of an impact on the game just by the mere notion that he is available. Teams adjusted their lineups, and it was so unorthodox that they would put in right-handers to pinch-hit against him. He really made people get away from their comfortable zone. They did some crazy things because he was pitching.” – Bernie Williams
“The thing I noticed — I think we all noticed — right away about Mariano, aside from his ability is the makeup. Quiet. Resolved. Not lacking emotion, obviously, and he just never made an excuse. Every single year, if anybody had a chance to admire what they’ve done — and he’s certainly one of those guys — he never took the time to do it, because it wasn’t time to stop doing it. I just feel very privileged to have been a part of it. … There’s nobody, I don’t care what era you’re talking about, who is ever going to do what he has done as a closer.” – Joe Torre
“We were always promoted together (in the minors), and we got sent down (from the big leagues back to the minors) on the same day. I remember when we got sent down, we were both pretty much in tears making a pact that we were going to come back as soon as possible, sitting down saying we thought we belonged, and we were hoping we’d get another chance. I don’t know if that’s a good (memory) or a bad one.” – Derek Jeter
“I’m sure that anybody that’s a Yankee fan, or a baseball fan, has watched, but just the humility that he shows (is what stands out). And I think you see that. He has absolutely dominated this game, but he carries himself just as he’s always carried himself. Class act. That’s what, I think, I would like people to know, and I hope people see that. He’s just always been a great teammate, and a great friend of mine. And I love him dearly.” – Andy Pettitte
Video by Vincent Z. Mercogliano/The Journal News