Mariano Rivera

The Star-Ledger sent me to spring training in 1997 to film reliever Mariano Rivera's delivery to compare him to other successful closers. I then took the footage to orthopedic surgeon Greg Gallick for his opinion if Rivera could withstand the riggers of being the full-time closer for the Yankees. People don't recall that there were questions if the slight pitcher could handle the workload. The doctor was spot-on: he said Rivera's compact throwing motion would allow him to make the transition to the closer row. After a 19-year career, the Hall of Famer is considered the best closer in history.

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