One Mo Legend to Wear #42
It seems fitting that the last player in Major League Baseball history to wear #42 is Mariano Rivera, the greatest closer of all-time and one of the top Yankees of all-time. The rest of baseball has retired #42 in honor of Jackie Robinson. Robinson not only fought racism and all sorts of barriers while integrating baseball in 1947, he represented class and dignity and professionalism. The guy wearing #42 for the Yanks, Mo Rivera, didn’t have to do the first part of the above sentence but he sure has done the second part. No one has represented baseball better than Rivera since 1995. So it only seems fitting, as we have 42 out as a movie this year and celebrate Jackie Robinson Day yet again as it has become an annual MLB tradition where all teams wear 42 on the back with no last name in honor of Robinson, that this is the final year of Mariano Rivera’s career. Who better than Rivera to wear 42 on a baseball field for a final time (outside of Jackie Robinson days in the future)?
Mariano Rivera will walk away from baseball after this season and leave a legacy behind with the Yankees and with baseball. He will leave as the greatest closer of them all. He will be in the Hall of Fame in a few short years. But perhaps Rivera’s greatest legacy and triumph won’t be left at all. It will instead simply be that of continuing another legacy for many years to come, the legacy of a man named Jackie Roosevelt Robinson.
By: Mike Lindsley, “Mid-Day with Mike,” 1-4, Yankees pre/post game host on 104.5 The Team ESPN Radio. Follow him on Twitter @MikeLSports.