Fan Proposes Ultimate Mariano Rivera Tribute

Sunday afternoon, before they took on the San Francisco Giants, the New York Yankees honored the retiring Mariano Rivera with a ceremony befitting a king.

The Yankees presented their legendary closer with some top shelf parting gifts…everyone in uniform wore a special patch, the team retired Rivera's number 42, displayed that same 42 on both the field and in Monument Park, donated $100,000 to the all-time saves leader's charity, gave him a rocking chair made of broken bats and a replica of his glove made out of Waterford crystal.

Heck, the team even brought in Mayor Mike Bloomberg to declare September 22, 2013 "Mariano Rivera Day".

And if that wasn't enough, even the bases were celebratory.  "Exit Sandman" they said, alluding to the closer's iconic theme song.  Speaking of, Hall of Fame rockers Metallica were on hand to perform a live version of Rivera's entrance song "Enter Sandman" and hand out presents.

So, you're asking yourself…"self, what more could have been done?" Seriously, was there a stone left unturned?!? 

Yes, and it's simple.  Name a street after him.  Yup, you heard me.  New York needs to name a street after Mariano Rivera. 

You see, Yankee Stadium sits on the corner of East 161st Street and River Avenue.  Why not change River Avenue to Rivera Avenue? 

Well, that's just what Yankees fan Dan Salogub is suggesting.

"I was watching the Yankees take on the White Sox in a crucial game as they hoped to secure a spot in October.  Mariano came in with two outs in the eighth with runners on first and second. He pitched a 1-2-3 ninth inning for his first four out save in nearly two years," Salogub told The Hall.  "It dawned on me…River Avenue is one of the streets that border Yankee Stadium.  So I bought the domain name and created @161stRiveraAve on Twitter and got to work.  My goal was NOT receive recognition from this but rather highlight Mariano's contribution as a Yankee and ambassador of New York City. I got a little carried away the first day and the account was shut down out of fear of spamming.  After that hiccup I learned from my mistake."

And after that hiccup?

"I reached out to Mike Vaccaro of the New York Post and was later featured in his front page story on September 18th," Salogub continued.  "I have had a lot of help from some friends and my brother with this campaign.  We have reached out to a few politicians via Twitter and some through traditional methods, but we have not made any in roads to date regarding the movement to rename the street. We hope that the influx of followers on the Twitter page will help with our mission."

And if that doesn't work?

"If we can't get the street renamed, it would be great to have something hanging over the street, like a banner, stating 'Rivera Avenue' kind of like what the Red Sox do with Yawkey Way," Salogub added.

Now, I'm going to go on record as saying "why not?"  Seriously, why not re-name the stretch of River Avenue after the iconic closer?  It's not unheard of. 

I mean, there's Roberto Clemente Street in Puerto Rico, Chicago has Kenny Lofton Lane and, for some unknown reason, there's still a Jose Canseco Street.  Sure, those are streets located in that player's hometown, but in San Francisco, they've actually named a stretch of road outside AT&T Park after Willie Mays

"To quote Walt Disney, 'it's kind of fun to do the impossible'," Salogub said.  "Not to say this feat is impossible in any way, but it is fun to have the challenge like this to honor a man who is such a gem to the community."

If you'd like to join the movement, you can follow Salogub on Twitter at @161stRiveraAve.

Shawn Anderson

About Shawn Anderson

Shawn Anderson is that guy who, instead of sitting there talking about the game going on around him, is talking wise about the history of baseball. He believes baseball figures such as Tommy John, Harold Baines, Ron Guidry and Billy Martin deserve their own plaque somewhere if not in Cooperstown. You can follow him on Twitter at @HOVG.

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