Mariano Rivera reported to camp yesterday and spoke to the press. Chad Jennings has a thorough recap:
Mariano Rivera left home yesterday, doing what Andy Pettitte couldn’t bring himself to do this winter.
“It’s hard,” Rivera said. “One of my kids was, the little one was attached to my hip, crying. It’s hard. A lot of people don’t see that, that part of the game. You have to leave your family. Even though you’re going to see them, being detached from your family is hard.”
It seems Rivera never seriously considered retirement this offseason, but he admitted that leaving home “gets harder and harder,” and now that his oldest son is 17, Rivera realizes he’s “missed a lot of things.”
“Baseball is not everything,” Rivera said. “That’s what we do, yeah, but there’s still life after baseball. There will come a time when you have to make a decision, even though you still have the abilities to play. That comes within yourself. If you don’t feel it in your heart, you don’t feel it in yourself no more, it’s time to say goodbye because, why are you going to do it if you don’t have the desire to do it? That’s why I thank God for Andy, and I respect him because he just didn’t have the desire to do it no more.”
As always, it will be a pleasure to watch the man work.