The 43-year-old pitcher gave up home runs to Miguel Cabrera and Victor Martinez to blow his third save in as many opportunities. As ESPN Stats and Info notes, this is something we have never seen before:
This is the 1st time Mariano Rivera has blown 3 straight save opportunities in his career.— ESPN Stats & Info (@ESPNStatsInfo) August 11, 2013
Rivera also suffered blown saves on Aug. 7 against the Chicago White Sox and Aug. 9 against the Tigers, when Cabrera hit a game-tying home run. This was another rare feat, according to Danny Knobler of CBS Sports:
Cabrera is the first to homer off Rivera twice in same series, second to hit two home runs off him in one season (Edgar Martinez in 1995).— Danny Knobler (@DannyKnoblerCBS) August 11, 2013
Ryan Field of Fox Sports 1 provides this statistic as well:
Per @EliasSports, Miguel Cabrera is the first player to HR in consecutive at-bats vs Mariano Rivera.— Ryan Field (@RyanFieldFS1) August 11, 2013
The reigning AL MVP has made a lot of pitchers look awful over the past few years, so his latest conquest should not be all that surprising.
New York eventually won Sunday's game thanks to a Brett Gardner walk-off home run, giving Rivera the win. Still, the recent slide provides plenty of reason to be concerned about the future Hall of Famer.
Should the Yankees be concerned about Mariano Rivera's recent struggles?
Heading into the week, the closer ranked second in the American League with 35 saves while only blowing two all season. He had a 1.56 ERA and provided little reason to doubt that he would continue this dominant level of play.
However, the last three appearances have seen his ERA balloon up to 2.44 thanks to five earned runs in a total of four innings.
The Yankees remain in striking distance of a playoff spot after the recent win, but the team will have to get better play from its All-Star closer in order to reach the postseason.
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