TAMPA, Fla. -- Mariano Rivera threw 32 pitches in a live batting practice session Monday morning, which is normally about a week's worth of work for him. As usual, he proclaimed all systems go.
But the 43-year-old closer, who is coming off ACL surgery on his right knee, is still at least 10 days away from pitching in a game this spring.
Rivera, who normally throws about eight innings in preseason games to get ready for the season, said he would probably throw a simulated game or two to practice coming off the mound to field bunts and cover first before pitching in an actual game.
He also said he no longer thinks about his knee, injured while shagging fly balls before a game in Kansas City last May 3. He will, however, continue to wear a compression sleeve on his knee throughout the season for added stability.