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Quintessential Mo-Ments No. 7: The first cream of the crop

08/26/2013 9:04 AM ET
By Lou DiPietro

Mariano Rivera celebrates with Sandy Alomar Jr. after closing out the 1997 All-Star Game.(AP)
As if his 27 first-half saves and 1.96 ERA weren’t enough to get him there on his own, Rivera had the support (and selection) of his manager, Joe Torre, in earning his first of 13 All-Star nods in 1997.

The 1997 game was played well before the mid-summer exhibition decided home field advantage in the World Series, but whether it "counted" or not, who better for Torre to call on to close out a win than his own guy?

Not shockingly, with a 3-1 lead in the ninth, Torre entered his own "Sandman" to back up seven others – including three in Randy Johnson, David Cone, and Roger Clemens who were or would go on to become his teammates – and lock down a victory for the AL…and fans watched as he mowed down Charles Johnson, Mark Grace, and Moises Alou in order to earn the first of four career All-Star saves.

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