Mariano Rivera Takes Field in All-Star Game to Enter Sandman and Huge Ovation

Josh Schoch@JoshSchochAnalyst IIIJuly 17, 2013

Mariano Rivera has pitched in the final All-Star Game of his Hall of Fame career.

The New York Yankees closer is the best of all time, and he made one final trip to the mound during the Midsummer Classic on Tuesday night.

Citi Field erupted when Mo came onto the field, with both fans and fellow players saluting one of the greatest players in baseball history.

As Rivera made the trip to the mound from the bullpen, all eyes were on him, and it ended up being the best moment of the night.

Mariano Rivera warming up in his last #AllStar game #42 #ASG

— YES Network (@YESNetwork) July 17, 2013

Rivera knew that this would be his last All-Star Game, and he thanked the crowd for their support.

Twitter absolutely exploded after Mo took the mound.

One last All-Star Game appearance for Mariano Rivera.

— (@CBSSports) July 17, 2013

The 13-time All-Star commanded the respect of baseball fans during the game, and they were more focused on him than Neil Diamond when he came on the big screen.

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Neil Diamond drowned out by sounds of fans cheering when Mariano Rivera appears on video board.

— Bill Shaikin (@BillShaikin) July 17, 2013

Mo has earned reverence from his peers as well, and they did what they could to make this moment special.

Manny and the #AL players give a standing ovation to Mariano Rivera as he takes the mound for the B8. #ASG

Baltimore Orioles (@Orioles) July 17, 2013

No player was on the field when Mariano Rivera entered the game. A two minute standing ovation and applause for the greatest closer ever.

— Brian Krasik (@bkrasik) July 17, 2013

If that weren't enough for you, NL All-Star and veteran Michael Cuddyer called this an incredible moment.

What an incredible moment right here. The greatest of all time!!! Enter the Sandman!!! #ASG

— Michael Cuddyer (@mcuddy3) July 17, 2013

While Mo pitched the eighth instead of the ninth to ensure that he did in fact make an appearance, the unusual circumstances didn't temper the moment.

This is the 1st time Mariano Rivera has pitched prior to the 9th inning in an All-Star Game

— ESPN Stats & Info (@ESPNStatsInfo) July 17, 2013

We said goodbye to one of the greatest players of all-time tonight, and it was a special moment indeed.

It might have been just another stop on Mo's much ballyhooed retirement tour, but pitching in one more All-Star Game in front of thousands of adoring fans was the best way for him to go out.

You couldn't have scripted it any better.