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Girardi not worried about Pettitte's focus in finale

Girardi not worried about Pettitte's focus in finale


NEW YORK -- Sunday wasn't just Mariano Rivera's day at Yankee Stadium. It was also Andy Pettitte's.

The veteran left-hander -- who announced on Friday that he will retire at the end of the season --made his final regular-season start at Yankee Stadium, against the Giants.

Pettitte took the mound moments after the Yankees finished their elaborate pregame celebration of Rivera's career, but manager Joe Girardi didn't think the day's fanfare will have any effect on Pettitte's emotions heading into a crucial start.

"Andy gets so locked in once he starts his day, that I don't think it will be an issue," Girardi said. "Andy will start his routine and it will be just like any other day for him."

Pettitte said he's honored to be able to share Sunday with Rivera. The pair of pitchers came up together in 1995, and they hold the Major League record for the most wins and saves as a duo (72).

Pettitte said he will be focused solely on the task at hand, not the emotions of the afternoon.

"I've told y'all, I am completely just focused on ball right now," Pettitte said on Friday. "I understand that this was something I had to deal with, but I'm getting my work in. I've got a good routine going now, I feel like. Like I've said, I'm trying to continue to be one of the guys in that clubhouse to push everybody and hopefully we've got to put together a great homestand, but we're not eliminated from this thing yet."

Josh Vitale is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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