HARRISON, N.Y. – New York Yankees relief pitcher Mariano Rivera, a Harrison resident and Major League Baseball's all-time leader in saves, suffered what could be a career-ending knee injury while shagging fly balls prior to Thursday's game in Kansas City against the Royals.
According to reports on the post-game report on the Yankees YES Network, Yankees manager Joe Girardi said Rivera slipped on the outfield dirt warning track and his right knee twisted before he fell to the ground.
Rivera was taken to a Kansas City hospital where he underwent an MRI. Girardi told a post-game press conference that the preliminary diagnosis was that Rivera had suffered a torn anterior cruciate ligament and that the 42-year-old right-hander would be returning to New York for further tests and treatment.
Baseball's leader in career saves with 608 was hurt about an hour before the Yankees' game. According to the report by YES, he was examined by Royals associate physician Dr. Joe Noland and Yankees trainers, and was sent immediately for an MRI exam at KU MedWest Hospital.
Rivera, who often chases fly balls during batting practice and is one of the Yankees best athletes, hinted prior to the season that this might be his final season. The ACL injury may ultimately end his career unless he can rehabilitate and chooses to return to the field.