Rachel Robinson, the widow of Jackie Robinson, showed her respect and admiration for Mariano Rivera as he completed his number 642 career save in the New York Yankees 3-0 victory over the Los Angeles Dodgers Wednesday. Her kind words for Rivera represent another pleasant highlight in Rivera’s farewell tour.
“I wanted to add a special greeting to the last player to wear number 42,” she said in a commemorative video. “When Major League Baseball retired Jack’s number in 1997, there were 13 players still wearing it, You have worn the number with class and dignity, and I believe you have added to the historic significance of that number.”
Rivera, humble as always, expressed his appreciation. In April, on Jackie Robinson Day, he also had this to say about his role in continuing the legacy:
“Me being the last player to wear it, it’s a challenge to keep the legacy that Mr. Jackie did, not only what he went through on the field, but off the field, River said. “The kind of person that he was, it’s great.”
In the video, she remarked that Jackie would have been proud to have his number worn by Rivera. She joked that he may have wished that it was worn by a player on a team other than the Yankees. She congratulated Rivera on his amazing career and wished him good luck in the future.
Rivera has earned a save in 34 of his 36 opportunities this season. The win gave the Yankees a split of the two game series with the Dodgers at Dodger Stadium.