TAMPA, Fla., March 9 (UPI) -- New York Yankees reliever Mariano Rivera, baseball's all-time saves leader with 608, announced Saturday he will retire after the upcoming season.
Rivera, 43, addressed reporters at the Yankees' spring training home in Tampa, Fla., with his family at this side.
"It's not too easy when you come to a decision like this," he said. "It has been a privilege and an honor to wear the pinstripes that I have proudly worn for so many years."
Rivera confirmed speculation he would have retired after the 2012 season had he not suffered a torn anterior cruciate ligament while shagging balls during batting practice in May.
The likely future Hall of Famer ended up with only five saves in nine appearances last season.
"Now is the time," Rivera said. "The little gas that I have left is for this year. There's nothing left. I did everything and I'm proud. I will never stop missing the game, or the action on the field, and my teammates."
The 12-time all-star had racked up at least 28 saves in 15 consecutive years prior to 2012 while dominating in the post-season.
The Yankees won five World Series titles with Rivera anchoring the bullpen.
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