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Mariano Rivera to START All-Star Game?

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Mariano Rivera to START All-Star Game?

Postby nsulham » Fri Jul 11, 2008 9:39 am

Interesting little tidbit from the Providence Journal:

July 10 (Bloomberg) -- Mariano Rivera usually closes games at Yankee Stadium. Next week, he may get to start one there for the American League All-Stars.

Boston's Terry Francona, the AL manager for the All-Star Game, refused to rule out picking the New York Yankees' relief ace as his starting pitcher or his closer for the July 15 game in the Bronx.

Rivera has saved 23 games this season and 466 in his 14- year career with the Yankees. Major League Baseball is holding next week's All-Star Game at Yankee Stadium to honor the final season of the 85-year-old ballpark. Rivera, Derek Jeter and Alex Rodriguez will be representing the Yankees.

Francona said he'll reveal the American League's starting pitcher at a press conference the day before the game.

"Everything and everybody and every situation will be treated with the utmost respect to where we are playing," Francona said today on a conference call with reporters "We are supposed to win the game, and that's what we are going to try to do."

Francona will manage the American League and Clint Hurdle of the Colorado Rockies will lead the National League because their teams won their leagues and played in the World Series last season. The Red Sox swept the Rockies in four games for the championship.

Rivera hasn't started a game since his rookie year, when he started 10. Starting the All-Star Game would insure the right- hander makes an appearance in a meaningful situation. He normally enters in the eighth or ninth inning to try to seal a victory.


Interesting discussion I think. Do you save Mo for the end of the game, when it could be tight and he might be needed for a save opp or it just as well might not be a close game therefore diminishing his appearance? Or do you give him the start, something people will surely remember for a while?

I'm a Red Sox fan yes but I'm also a huge fan of the game so I'm mixed. I'd love to see Mo close out a win for the AL in Yankee Stadium but it's just as likely the NL leads late or it's not a close enough game where his appearance means anything. But if you give him the start, that's some big buzz right there and something he and everyone else would remember for some time. What's the harm in letting him start the first inning or two? Obviously Francona would keep an eye on a pitch count so as not to let him extend himself past what he would normally throw. I say if he can get two innings in at about 30-40 pitches why not?
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Re: Mariano Rivera to START All-Star Game?

Postby thedude » Fri Jul 11, 2008 9:56 am

It might also be nice to see a Yankee (especially one as important as Mo) to start this particular All-Star game.
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Re: Mariano Rivera to START All-Star Game?

Postby Tavish » Fri Jul 11, 2008 9:58 am

Francona needs to be real careful. If Mo were to start and pitch more than 1 inning he is risking some serious allegations of sabotage.
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Re: Mariano Rivera to START All-Star Game?

Postby Yoda » Fri Jul 11, 2008 10:00 am

It's NY and the final ASG at the Stadium so I could see it.
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Re: Mariano Rivera to START All-Star Game?

Postby nsulham » Fri Jul 11, 2008 10:05 am

Tavish wrote:Francona needs to be real careful. If Mo were to start and pitch more than 1 inning he is risking some serious allegations of sabotage.


I hear you Tav and if this were to happen I think the general consensus would be give him his inning and get him out of there but say he goes 1-2-3 in the first, then what? Give him another inning of work or let him go out on a high?

One other thing to think about, if Mo starts and say gives them two innings, that means two less innings one of the starters has to go which if the game goes extras could be useful since you'd much rather have stretched-out starters available than a reliever who might only be able to give you an inning.
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Re: Mariano Rivera to START All-Star Game?

Postby Matthias » Fri Jul 11, 2008 10:17 am

I don't think you manage for a tie. As was seen by the called ASG, you don't fire all of your bullets so everyone gets to play, but you don't manage just with that in mind.

I don't like the idea of starting Mariano. He's not a starter. Put him in during the 9th.
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Re: Mariano Rivera to START All-Star Game?

Postby nsulham » Fri Jul 11, 2008 10:36 am

Matthias wrote:I don't think you manage for a tie. As was seen by the called ASG, you don't fire all of your bullets so everyone gets to play, but you don't manage just with that in mind.

I don't like the idea of starting Mariano. He's not a starter. Put him in during the 9th.


If the situation warrants it sure I'd love to see him in the ninth close out the game but again what if it's not a close game? Then you have him pitch the ninth in an almost meaningless situation. Wouldn't it be cooler if Mo had the chance to start the game and have a Pedro-esque ASG performance where he strikes out the side in the first? I just think the notion of not having him start simply "because he's a reliever" is misjudged, especially considering the situations around it.
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Re: Mariano Rivera to START All-Star Game?

Postby RedHopeful » Fri Jul 11, 2008 11:14 am

nsulham wrote:
Matthias wrote:I don't think you manage for a tie. As was seen by the called ASG, you don't fire all of your bullets so everyone gets to play, but you don't manage just with that in mind.

I don't like the idea of starting Mariano. He's not a starter. Put him in during the 9th.


If the situation warrants it sure I'd love to see him in the ninth close out the game but again what if it's not a close game? Then you have him pitch the ninth in an almost meaningless situation. Wouldn't it be cooler if Mo had the chance to start the game and have a Pedro-esque ASG performance where he strikes out the side in the first? I just think the notion of not having him start simply "because he's a reliever" is misjudged, especially considering the situations around it.

Yeah, I agree with this. All-star games warrant a different thinking in that it's entirely for the fan's enjoyment to celebrate the players. I can't think of a better way to start the final one in Yankee stadium with their greatest closer getting on the mound first. You just can't take a chance that the late innings are meaningless.

Btw, no one on earth does he pitch more than 1 inning.
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Re: Mariano Rivera to START All-Star Game?

Postby acsguitar » Fri Jul 11, 2008 11:20 am

I think Hurdle should make Webb throw a complete game on light rest!
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Re: Mariano Rivera to START All-Star Game?

Postby RocketsDWM » Fri Jul 11, 2008 11:23 am

Not happening. Francona alluded to this fact in his teleconference with the media earlier in the week. And wouldnt it be better for Mariano to close the final AS game in the stadium? I think that is more respectful than having him start the game. Have Pap in the 8th and Rivera in the 9th. Perfect ending.
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