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Tuesday, June 11, 2013
One Mo Time: Rivera vs. Athletics

By Katie Sharp and Mark Simon

Jeff Carlick/Getty ImagesMariano Rivera pitches against the A's, circa 1998.
For the remainder of the 2013 season, we will look ahead to Mariano Rivera's matchups against teams he will be facing for the final time in the regular season. We missed out on the Diamondbacks, but we'll circle back and play catch-up with that one eventually.

Next up in our series, a look at Rivera's history against the Oakland Athletics.


By the Numbers
Mariano Rivera's career stats vs. Athletics


Regular Season
2.27 ERA
35 saves
87 1/3 IP
68 hits allowed
70 strikeouts
25 walks

Postseason (2000 ALDS, 2001 ALDS)
0.00 ERA
5 saves
10 IP
6 hits allowed
6 strikeouts
0 walks


Did you know?
•  Rivera's first career major league win came against the Athletics on May 28, 1995. Rivera pitched 5 1/3 innings, allowing one run. The losing pitcher for the Athletics that day was Yankees bullpen coach Mike Harkey.

•  Rivera has five career wins versus Oakland. He has more wins versus only two other teams -- Baltimore (8) and Toronto (7).

•  Rivera has 35 saves versus the A's, the most by any pitcher in history (and one more than Troy Percival).

•  Rivera has saved his past 12 opportunities against the Athletics. That is tied with Joakim Soria and David Aardsma for the longest active save streak versus the A's.

•  Rivera pitched 3 2/3 innings in relief without allowing a hit versus the Athletics on Sept. 1, 1995. It was not only his first career no-hit appearance in the majors, it was his most innings pitched in his career without giving up a hit.

•  From Aug. 23, 1996, to April 27, 2001, Rivera pitched against the Athletics 23 times (including postseason) and allowed a run in only one game. That span encompassed 29 innings in which Rivera allowed only one run.

•  All five of Rivera's postseason saves against the Athletics were at least four outs. The only other team he has five postseason saves of at least four outs against is the Red Sox.

•  Rivera is 5-for-5 in save chances in the postseason against the A's. That matches his most postseason saves without a blown save against any team (he is also 5-for-5 versus the Angels and Rangers).

•  Rivera has allowed five walk-off home runs in his career, but arguably the most shocking came against the Athletics on April 15, 2007: a three-run, two-out homer by Marco Scutaro on an 0-2 count with the Athletics trailing by two runs.

That is the only one of the walk-off hits against Rivera to come on an 0-2 count.

•  Rivera has hit six of the 357 A's batters he has faced. The only team he has hit more times is the Red Sox (10 of 524 batters).

•  Rivera allowed seven runs in four innings in a start against the A's on June 6, 1995. That's the most runs he's allowed in any game in his career.


They said it
"The best way for me to describe him is to describe watching our hitters if we were trailing the Yankees and didn't score in the eighth inning ... to see how dejected they were knowing that they would have to face him in the ninth inning. It was like, 'Game Over.'"
-- former Oakland Athletics pitcher and current ESPN analyst Mark Mulder


Magic 'Mo'ments
•  Rivera became the full-time closer for the Yankees at the start of the 1997 season after the Yankees let John Wetteland leave as a free agent in the offseason. Rivera's first save as the team's closer that year came against the A's on April 5, pitching 1 1/3 scoreless innings.

•  When the Yankees came back from a 2-0 series deficit to beat the Athletics in the 2001 ALDS, it was Rivera who was on the mound at the end, striking out Greg Myers and Eric Byrnes to end Game 5 and cap the remarkable comeback.