The Yankees added two runs to their lead in the top of the ninth inning tonight, giving Mariano Rivera a three-run lead to work with.
But I have news for you: Rivera would have been just as calm and just as efficient if he only had a one-run lead. The pressure of the moment didn’t rattle the great Rivera, nor did the deafening noise in the dome. The unruly fan who decided to leave his seat and charge the field — he didn’t even get Mo to flinch. That’s because Rivera is the greatest closer in history, a point that he underscores during each postseason series.
Rivera recorded the final three outs in the Metrodome’s baseball history, completing a sweep of the Twins in the ALDS.
Then the celebration began. In the tiny visiting locker room of the Metrodome, the Yankees doused themselves the champagne — and any other beverages they could get their hands on.
Nick Swisher told me that “this is as good as it gets.” Then he corrected himself.
“We need to win two more series.” That will be as good as it gets.”
–Alfred Santasiere III