TAMPA — Yankees closer Mariano Rivera said he has reached a decision on whether this will be his final season and plans to announce it before opening day.
"Yes, I have," Rivera said Wednesday after the Yankees' first spring workout for pitchers and catchers. "But again, I will tell you guys when I think it's the right moment."
Baseball's career saves leader had surgery June 12 to repair a torn anterior cruciate ligament in his right knee, an injury that occurred while he was shagging fly balls during batting practice in Kansas City on May 3.
The right-hander, 43, expects to be ready for the season. He threw 25 pitches off a bullpen mound and said it felt good.
"It was wonderful to be out there again," Rivera said.
When asked on a scale of one to 10 how the knee currently is, Rivera said, "around nine, for sure."
He added: "The other point will be the running that I do here."
Rivera wore a small lightweight brace that he plans to use in games this year. He will continue shagging fly balls in batting practice, an activity that has the approval of manager Joe Girardi.
In other Yankees news, catcher Francisco Cervelli said he consulted with Biogenesis of America LLC after a foot injury but did not receive any treatment from the now-closed Coral Gables clinic, which has been accused of providing performance-enhancing drugs to athletes.
HERNANDEZ DEAL: Right-hander Felix Hernandez signed a seven-year, $175 million contract with the Mariners that makes him the highest-paid pitcher in baseball. Hernandez was greeted by front-office staff all wearing yellow "Kings Court" T-shirts that have become a special section of the stadium for all of his starts. He immediately got choked up, repeatedly saying, "I will not disappoint anybody."
BONDS APPEAL: A lawyer for Barry Bonds urged a federal appeals court in San Francisco to toss out the home run king's obstruction of justice conviction, saying a rambling answer he gave while testifying before a grand jury was not a crime. Appellate specialist Dennis Riordan argued that Bonds was not formally or specifically charged with the felony that he was convicted of committing.
ANGELS: An MRI exam on reliever Ryan Madson showed no structural damage in his shoulder. The right-hander won't throw for at least another week.
INDIANS: Right-hander Daisuke Matsuzaka, limited to 18 starts the past two seasons because of elbow issues, officially signed a minor-league deal.
PADRES: Suspended catcher Yasmani Grandal plans to apologize to his teammates this weekend. Grandal was banned in November for the first 50 games of the season after testing positive for performance-enhancing drugs.
REDS: Right-hander Johnny Cueto said he has had no issues from the pulled muscles in his right side that ended his postseason after eight pitches.
WHITE SOX: Manager Robin Ventura confirmed that he turned down a one-year contract extension in October, saying he prefers to focus on the two years remaining on his deal.