Rubén Rivera Moreno (born November 14, 1973) is a Panamanian professional baseball player for the Acereros de Monclova of the Mexican Baseball League. He played Major League Baseball for five different teams, from 1995 to 2003. His cousin, Mariano Rivera, was the former long-time closer for the New York Yankees. With the Yankees, he won the 1996 World Series over the world champion Atlanta Braves.
New York Yankees (1990–1997)
Rivera was signed by the New York Yankees in 1990. He made his professional debut with the Gulf Coast Yankees in 1992 and his major league debut with the Yankees on September 3, 1995. Rivera was highly touted as a prospect, being ranked as high as second overall amongst prospects by Baseball America in 1995, third in 1996, and ninth in 1997.
He played in 46 games for the 1996 New York Yankees. Though he was added to the postseason roster, Rivera only appeared in the 1996 American League Division Series during the 1996 postseason.
San Diego Padres (1997–2000)
On April 22, 1997, he was traded with pitcher Rafael Medina and US $3 million to the San Diego Padres for infielder Homer Bush and minor leaguer Gordon Amerson and two players to be named later, who turned out to be the highly anticipated Japanese pitcher Hideki Irabu and minor leaguer Vernon Maxwell. It was supposed to be a deal to help both teams, but Irabu was a major disappointment for the Yankees, and Rivera turned out to be at least a minor disappointment for the Padres, as he was never able to get on base on a regular basis during his four seasons in the Padres organization, mostly with the parent team (including as a starter in 2000 and 2001). He was released shortly before the 2001 season.
Cincinnati Reds, Texas Rangers & San Francisco Giants (2001–2006)
The Cincinnati Reds signed Rivera for the 2001 season. They waived him after the season, and the San Francisco Giants picked him up, but released him a month later without his having played a game for them. The Texas Rangers signed him for the 2002 season.
In 2003, Rivera re-joined the Giants as a free agent.
Rivera signed with the Baltimore Orioles in July 2003, and played for them in the minors. The Chicago White Sox signed Rivera to play for the Triple-A Charlotte Knights for 2006, where despite hitting 16 home runs, he batted only .239.
Mexican League (2007–present)
He played for the Piratas de Campeche from 2007–2012, switched to Delfines de Ciudad del Carmen in 2013. In 2014, he played center field for the Rieleros de Aguascalientes. In 2015, Rivera played for both the Diablos Rojos del México and the Olmecas de Tabasco. In 2016, he started the season with the Olmecas de Tabasco before he was traded to the Pericos de Puebla, who ended up winning the League Championship. In 2017, he was traded to the Acereros de Monclova.
World Baseball Classic (2006, 2009)
Rivera played in both the 2006 and 2009 World Baseball Classic for Panama's national team. He is a combined 3 for 16 with 1 home run and 5 strikeouts in both tournaments.
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