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Mariano Rivera’s exit marks end of an era at Yankee Stadium
Fans remained on their feet, chanting his name as he got two quick outs on six pitches. In his first appearance since the Yankees retired his No. 42 during a 50-minute ceremony Sunday, Rivera retired Delmon Young on a groundout and Sam Fuld on a comebacker.
He lingered on the dugout bench when the eighth inning ended and took in the whole stadium scene as he teammates ran onto the field. Rivera jogged out last and was given another standing ovation. With the crowd shouting at a postseason level, he retired Jose Lobaton on a comebacker and Yunel Escobar on a popup to second before the famous, final scene.
The Yankees, eliminated from playoff contention, finish the season with three games in Houston.
The oldest player in the major leagues, Rivera record 314 of his record 652 saves at home during a 19-year big league career, and 18 of his record 42 postseason saves were at the old and new Yankee Stadium.
Rivera helped the Yankees to five World Series titles, getting the final out in four of them.
Tampa Bay lowered to two its magic number over Texas for clinching an AL wild-card berth. The Rays swept this three-game series, outscoring the Yankees 19-3.
Alex Cobb (11-3) took a one-hit shutout into the eighth, retiring 15 in a row between walks to Curtis Granderson in the second and Robinson Cano in the seventh. He wound up allowing three hits in seven innings-plus.
Evan Longoria hit an RBI single in the fourth against Ivan Nova (9-6) and a two-run single off Dellin Betances in the eighth. Young hit a long solo homer to left-center in the sixth.
New York has lost nine of 12, including four in a row, and at 82-77 will have its fewest wins in a non-shortened season since
A night after the Yankees were eliminated from contention — missing the playoffs for just the second time in 19 years — it was a night for nostalgia. Rivera’s 42 — he’s the last player to wear Jackie Robinson’s old number — was painted in foul territory in front of each dugout.
Rivera, who announced during spring training that this would be his final season, was given his first standing ovation of the night when he met with Yankees employees in the interview room across the tunnel from the Yankees clubhouse. He lingered on the field during batting practice, signing autographs for fans. And just before the first pitching, there was another set of presentations at home plate — a daily fixture during the final homestand.
Chants of “Mar-i-a-no!” began three pitches in. Fans cheered every time Rivera and Pettitte appeared on the center-field video board, and sustained “Mar-i-a-no!” chants resumed when he started warming up in the bullpen in the top of the eighth. Fans screamed “We want Mo!” after Longoria’s single gave the Rays a four-run lead.
More honors are ahead this weekend, when the Yankees finish the season at Houston. The Astros plan a pregame ceremony Sunday that will include former New York manager Joe Torre and former Rivera teammate Roger Clemens.
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