Thursday night, America witnessed something special, as Mariano Rivera took the mound for the last time at Yankee Stadium and plans to retire after the season.
Teams around baseball decided to send him out in style as well, showering Rivera with gifts during his last road series with each team. Each gift was a lovely gesture, and a novel way to honor one of baseball’s most dominant players who is a model of excellence on and off the field.
However, what you might not have noticed at first glance is how each gift got more and more extravagant as the season went on, with organizations in the majors trying to seemingly one up each other in grandiosity of their gifts. So, what we have here is each token of appreciation awarded to Rivera this season, in order of most plain to out of this world. Mariano Rivera still has to visit Houston and Toronto one last time, but it is hard to imagine their gifts topping what you are about to see here. If anything, we’ll do a nice job of hyping up the competition between the AL East gifts and the final two teams’ goodbye gestures.
This is in no way intended to disrespect Mariano Rivera or his accomplishments, nor an attack on the idea of him receiving a farewell tour. This is simply an observation, and something to think about coming from the mind of a conspiracy theorist.
And to spice things up a bit, we’ve included some of Mo’s most memorable moments against each particular team in every slide.