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Rivera Makes Final Bronx Appearance in Yankees’ Loss

Mariano Rivera said goodbye to Yankee Stadium with hugs, tears and cheers.

Mariano Rivera, New York Yankees
Mariano Rivera of the New York Yankees salutes the fans after he is pulled from the game in the ninth inning against the Tampa Bay Rays at Yankee Stadium in the Bronx. (Elsa, Getty Images)

Baseball’s most acclaimed relief pitcher made an emotional exit in his final appearance in the Yankees‘ home pinstripes, when captain Derek Jeter and Andy Pettitte came to the mound to remove him with two outs in the ninth inning of a 4-0 loss to the Tampa Bay Rays on Thursday night.

“It’s time to go,” Jeter appeared to tell Rivera.

During four minutes of thunderous chanting from the sellout crowd 48,675 began, an overcome Rivera sobbed as he buried his head on the shoulder of Pettitte, who also is retiring when the season ends Sunday, and then hugged Jeter.

It was an extraordinary sight in a sport where a manager almost always goes to the mound to make a pitching change.

(Copyright 2013 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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