There have been reports that Rivera's knee has been bothering him and whispers that the reverent closer didn't want to disrespect the game by going in as a novelty.
Of playing in the outfield Sunday, Rivera said: "I did consider it strongly. If it would have been a few years earlier, then I would have done it. But now my knee is not cooperating. I'm not going to make a fool of myself out there. I respect the game too much for me to do something that I'm not supposed to be doing.''
Rivera had said in spring training that he wanted to "empty the tank'' this season. The 43-year-old said he did exactly that.
"Oh my God, yes,'' he said. "I think I spent every ounce of fuel that I had in my tank. It's empty. I had nothing left. I gave everything that I had. I can go home. I can say, 'You know what, I used every talent that the Lord gave me.' ''
If that is the case, it means Thursday's symbolic four-out relief appearance against the Rays at Yankee Stadium might have been the last time fans got to see Rivera play in a major league game.
While it was a fun thought, Joe Girardi said Mariano playing CF is not going to happen. Still possible that Thur was his last game.
— Sweeny Murti (@YankeesWFAN) September 28, 2013