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Life after pinstripes: ‘Sandman’ still in demand

More than two months after a tearful goodbye to Major League Baseball, Mariano Rivera is still drawing a crowd.

The legendary former pitcher with the New York Yankees has endorsement deals with Nike and serves as brand ambassador for audio gear supply company Harman.

When Rivera visited the company's new flagship store, on Madison Avenue in Manhattan, on Dec. 7, lines formed outside at 5 a.m. Some fans had traveled from as far away as Kansas.

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"To me it is humbling. I am glad there are people that feel that way about me," Rivera said in an exclusive interview with CNBC that aired Wednesday on "Squawk on the Street." "All I do is play the game the right way and do my best, and you do that by leading by example."

Rivera's former team has been making a splash in free agency but just lost its All-Star second baseman, Robinson Cano, to the Seattle Mariners, in a 10-year, $240 million deal.

Rivera said he's pleased with the Yankees' latest acquisitions, though.

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Mariano Rivera salutes fans as he leaves a game in the ninth inning at Yankee Stadium on Sept. 26.
Jim McIsaac | Getty Images
Mariano Rivera salutes fans as he leaves a game in the ninth inning at Yankee Stadium on Sept. 26.

"They are old men, but they are good," Rivera said on "Squawk on the Street." "They are all capable of doing great jobs. [Brian] McCann, [Jacoby] Ellsbury and obviously [Carlos] Beltran. I keep saying it is great offense ... but we need pitching."

Rivera played 19 seasons with the Yankees—his entire MLB career. A 13-time All-Star and five-time World Series champion, he is the league's career leader in saves, with 652.

—By CNBC's Stefanie Kratter


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