The New York Yankees didn’t win any World Series in the 2010s, and struck out in 2020 and 2021, too.
But in the late 1990s and the early 2000s, they were a force to be reckoned with.
From 1996 to 2003, they went to six World Series and won four of them.
One of the men behind that incredible run of success was relief pitcher Mariano Rivera.
Initially a starter, he made his debut in MLB exactly 27 years ago.
“On this day in 1995, Mariano Rivera made his MLB debut. What followed was 5 World Series titles, 13 All-Star nods, 652 saves and the first-ever unanimous induction into the Hall of Fame,” YES Network tweeted.
On this day in 1995, Mariano Rivera made his MLB debut.
What followed was 5 World Series titles, 13 All-Star nods, 652 saves and the first-ever unanimous induction into the Hall of Fame 🏆 pic.twitter.com/dqdjtchUip
— YES Network (@YESNetwork) May 23, 2022
That fifth World Series title came in 2009, which happens to be the last the Yankees have won.
Rivera was the best and most accomplished relief pitcher in the history of baseball, as simple as that.
The Only Unanimous Hall Of Famer In History
And, in the playoffs, he was as automatic as they come.
His resume does include some painful blown saves in October, but the good times were far more frequent.
Rivera is the only man in the history of the league to enter the National Baseball Hall of Fame in an unanimous vote, in 2019.
Former teammate and friend Derek Jeter was only a vote shy of entering unanimously a year later.
Rivera’s contributions to the game of baseball are extremely valuable.
Nobody has earned more saves that him, at 652.
His lifetime ERA is 2.21, he went to 13 All-Star Games, he was the World Series MVP in 1999, and the ALCS MVP in 2003.
He won five Relief Man of the Year awards, and earned many more accolades during his storied career.
Yankees fans love him, perhaps more than any other player in the late-1990s dynasty besides Jeter.
Today, 27 years ago, was a historic day in MLB.