Pinstripe Alley poses the following question:
Mariano Rivera or Derek Jeter? Which of these two current New York Yankee icons is higher on the franchise’s list of all-time greats?
For me, the answer is simple. Rivera. No contest.
As great as Jeter is, and as much as he has meant to the Yankees, the last 15 years of Yankee baseball have been about one thing, and one thing only. Get the ball to Rivera with a lead, then wait for John Sterling to start screeching “Yankees win … Theeeeeeee Yankees win.”
Jeter is the Captain. Rivera has been, and still is, the Most Important Yankee.
I think the question needs to be defined more clearly. If you were making a list of all-time greats based on rating players relative to their peers and considering their position, Mariano may rank higher. Unlike Jeter, Mo is peerless, and is clearly the greatest of all time at his position. However, it is hard for a closer to have anything approaching the value of an everyday player. Therefore, if you were ranking the list in terms of value provided to the Yankees, you would likely have Jeter ahead of Mo.
What is your position? Who would you take if forced to choose one?
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