Mariano Rivera and Yankees Agree to 1-Year Deal

Tyler ConwayFeatured ColumnistNovember 29, 2012

The greatest closer in Major League Baseball history will don the pinstripes for at least one more season, as Mariano Rivera and the New York Yankees have reportedly agreed to a one-year contract, according to ESPN's Jayson Stark.

UPDATE: Friday, November 30th at 6:50 p.m. ET by Kyle Vassalo

Mariano Rivera may be well past his prime, but by no means does the legendary closer seem content with going through the motions this season. The Yankees' official Twitter posted this quote from Rivera regarding his return: 

"I'm not just coming back to play. I'm coming back to win." - Mariano.

— New York Yankees (@Yankees) November 30, 2012

---End of Update---

UPDATE: Friday, Nov. 30 at 5:47 p.m. by Ethan Grant

It's official, New York. Rivera is coming back for one more swan song and a shot at title No. 6. According to USA Today's Bob Nightengale, the Yankees have officially come to terms with their long-time closer.

The #Yankees officially announce Mariano Rivera deal

— Bob Nightengale (@BNightengale) November 30, 2012

So there you have it. The same week that decorated NBA star Derek Fisher returns for title No. 6, Rivera too will take a crack at another remarkable feat. Now Yankees fans can stop worrying about the bullpen and start worrying about this pesky Derek Jeter issue.

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UPDATE: Thursday, Nov. 29 at 8:11 p.m. by Tyler Conway

According to CBS Sports' Jon Heyman, the two sides have agreed on parameters to the deal. Rivera will earn $10 million in guarantees in 2013 with the possibility of more, via incentives:


#yankees and mariano rivera have agreed on a $10M guarantee for 2013. will also have awards/incentives.

— Jon Heyman (@JonHeymanCBS) November 30, 2012


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Though the full scope of the deal is yet to be finalized, Stark is reporting that the deal will include a pay cut from the $15 million Rivera made in 2012:

As reported Wednesday, Rivera is expected to take a pay cut from the $15 million he earned in 2012, and likely will be guaranteed a salary in the neighborhood of $11 million to $12 million. The deal is expected to include incentives that would allow him to reach $15 million in earnings if he is healthy enough to pitch all season.

While this move had seemed preordained for weeks, getting the deal done will come as a big relief to Yankees management. Rivera had vacillated on his desire to play in recent months before finally deciding to give it one more go. 

If the deal gets done, the Yankees' closer will return for a 19th season in the big leagues, and he will look to add to his 608 saves, an MLB record. Still recovering from an ACL tear that ended his 2012 campaign in May, it will be interesting to see how close Rivera is to full strength by spring training.

Rivera's return would probably end Rafael Soriano's time in the Big Apple as well. The former setup man notched 42 saves for the Yankees in 2012, but opted out of his contract in hopes of scoring a big-time deal in free agency.

With that in mind, the pressure will be ratcheted up on Rivera in 2013.

While his greatness is unquestioned, you have to wonder whether he can perform as expected. The ACL tear was the first major injury of Rivera's major league career, and he just turned 43 years old.

Nonetheless, it's unlikely that any Yankees fan across the world will be any less than thrilled that Rivera is close to an agreement. He may not be around forever, but at least Rivera should get an opportunity to go out on top.