Originally Posted by TSJ55
If you're saying that you would take one of those guys before Mo over the course of career then good luck. I'll take Mo and not look back.
I think everyone would take Rivera, that is not really the issue being discussed. Obviously everyone would want the better pitcher.
The issue being debated is how and when
to use the best pitchers on your team.
I would take Rivera, but instead of saving him for the 9th inning (when we might already have a big lead and wouldn't need to burn a great pitcher to close out a game we have already won), I would use him in a critical situation whenever it arises -- even if it is the 5th or 6th inning. Make sure to have your best pitchers face the best hitters whenever they come to the plate in a clutch situation and you are much more likely to have the lead at the end of the game. It makes zero sense to use an inferior pitcher against the heart of the lineup in the 7th or 8th inning so you can save your best reliever to face the bottom of the lineup in the 9th.
Runs in the 9th inning are no different than runs in any other inning. The game is always
on the line.
I would also say the pressure on the pitcher is far greater in a tie game than in a game where they already have the lead, yet managers wait to use the closer until they have a lead to protect, despite the fact that closers supposedly have been given that role because they are great at handling the pressure.
There is certainly more pressure on the pitcher in a close game in any inning than there is on a closer coming into the 9th inning with a 2 or 3 run lead.