The Relief Pitcher has always struggled to enter the halls of Cooperstown, but they are some there. With Mariano Rivera there should be no doubt that the not only should he enter the Baseball Hall of Fame, but he should enter immediately. There should be no wait for the greatest closer of all time.
This isn’t just because he has the most Saves in history. There have been other players who have been able to say that (see Smith, Lee) who were far from the dominant player that he was. With a fastball you knew was coming, batters still struggled to make contact and Rivera, a career Yankee would retire with the following sick numbers:
First in All Time Saves, Games Finished and ERA +.
A BWAR of 56.1
An ERA of 2.21
A career WHIP of 1.000
And that is just the regular season. Rivera was even better in the playoffs where over the 32 series he participated in he has an 8-1 record with 42 Saves, an ERA of 0.70 and a WHIP of 0.759, a fact that can not be overlooked should a voter not want to put him in the Hall on the first ballot.
Best reliever of all time? No doubt about it.