Yankees: Relive Mariano Rivera Recording 500th Career Save on This Day in 2009
Mariano Rivera etched his name into the history books on this day in 2009.
The last time the New York Yankees won a World Series, the Sandman became a baseball legend. On this day back in 2009, Mariano Rivera recorded his 500th career save to join Trevor Hoffman as the only two relievers to reach that milestone.
When all was said and done, Mo finished as the greatest. He played four more seasons and finished with 652 career saves, 952 games finished, and an ERA+ of 202, all of which are the best of all time.
There’s a reason he was the first-ever player to be unanimously voted into the Baseball Hall of Fame.
Oh yeah, sorry Mets fans, but this came against you at Citi Field. I guess that’s just another way to spruce up that fiery rivalry you guys claim we have, right?
In that same game, Mo recorded his first career RBI on a bases-loaded walk to give the Yankees an insurance run in the top of the ninth.
Then he slammed the door shut in the bottom half of the inning.
The best part of all this? He didn’t even make the moment about himself. He talked about the game’s best closers, how he has respect for all of them, and that he’s just looking to do his job each and every time he jogs out to the mound.
By the end of the 2009 season, Mo had a 1.76 ERA and 0.91 WHIP with 44 saves and 72 strikeouts in 66.1 innings of work. He finished 15th in the MVP voting and took home a World Series while allowing just ONE earned run in 16 postseason innings. He finished with five saves and 14 strikeouts in those appearances.
Though the end of Rivera’s career wasn’t exactly storybook material — he tore his ACL in 2012 and the Yanks missed the playoffs in 2013, which was his final season — the Sandman is the greatest closer in history and that might never change.