Updated 11:44 PM EST, Fri, Jan 28, 2022

Yankees Pitcher Mariano Rivera to be Honored this Year: His Greatest Moments in Baseball

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Retired New York Yankees pitcher Mariano Rivera will be the guest of honor during a plaque ceremony at Yankee Stadium on Aug. 14.

According to Fox News, the event will precede a game between the Yankees and the Tampa Bay Rays.

Rivera is just three years removed from playing his last MLB game, but the Yankees don't want to prolong their gratitude to the man who helped the team win the 1996, 1998, 1999, 2000 and 2009 World Series.

The Panama City native entered the MLB in 1995 and was the last player to wear the number 42 after the league retired Jackie Robinson's iconic jersey number for all teams.

Rivera wasn't a legend by his number association alone. He also had the stats to support his own legacy. During his illustrious 19-year professional career, Rivera tallied 652 regular season saves and 42 postseason saves, the most ever in MLB history, as per Baseball Reference.

The Yankees had already honored Rivera during the team's last regular season home game in September 2013. Apart from his on-the-field records, the Panamanian also holds the distinction of being the first active Yankee to have his jersey retired at Monument Park.

ESPN reported that the pre-game ceremony almost lasted an hour. It featured a performance by Metallica and a surprise tribute video by Rivera's teammates.

Rivera's former associates were present at the occasion, including Jorge Posada, Derek Jeter, Gene Michael and Joe Torre. The event was also attended by Panamanian president Ricardo Martinelli, who was on hand to pay tribute to one of Central America's most endearing sportsmen.

Yankees manager Joe Girardi said at that time that he was impressed by Rivera's efficiency despite his relatively advanced age of 43. Girardi stated, "We have watched something that is truly special."

Mayor Michael Bloomberg was present during the ceremony to formally declare Sept. 22, 2013 as Mariano Rivera Day.

"Seeing my ex-teammates and the whole stadium packed with a lot of flags and fellow Panamanians...a lot of emotions. It was more than what I was thinking," Rivera said about the event.

Rivera averaged an ERA of 2.21 for his entire baseball career. In the post-season his ERA is 0.70.

The Guardian tried to quantify Rivera's greatness via Wins Above Replacement numbers. A player's WAR rating is a comprehensive statistic that sums up a player's overall contribution to his team. By comparison, San Diego Padres pitcher Trevor Hoffman, the all-time saves leader prior to Rivera, owns a WAR rating of 28. The Panamanian icon, meanwhile, has a WAR rating of 56.3.

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