On September 29, the New York Yankees were going up against the Houston Astros in the final game of the baseball season. In the ninth inning, the Bronx Bombers went to their bullpen to close the game. The bullpen door opened and out stepped... David Robertson? Yes folks, instead of Mariano Rivera, Robertson came out to close the game with the echoes of boos surrounding the air that encircled him. The Astros fans wanted to see Rivera, but they received the possible future closer for the Yankees.
Joe Girardi called the All-Star reliever into the game to see if he could handle the pressure and test him on his performance as a closer. Robertson was already an elite setup man. In 70 appearances this past year, he was 5-1 with a 2.04 ERA. He struck out 77 batters in over 66 innings. With these kind of statistics, he surely deserves a shot for the closing spot. In 2012, he was placed on the disabled list with an oblique strain and didn’t really have a chance to showcase his skills when Rivera was injured at that time as well.
Replacing a legend is one of the hardest things to succeed in, as many of the fans will be expecting a lot from the player. If Robertson does replace Rivera next season, he will have to understand the amount of scrutiny and pressure is enormous. There have also been rumors of adding closer Joe Nathan, the closer for the Texas Rangers this past season. He has been known to dominate in the ninth inning and was Rivera’s replacement during the All-Star game this past July. If the Yankees decide to add Nathan, Robertson will have to step up his game and put up a good fight for the closing position.