Saturday, May 24, 2014

This is just another America has been very, very good to me story.  It is about a famous Yankee pitcher who you can see pretty much anytime you want now with his wife, the Pastor of a church in   New Rochelle, New York. Mariano Rivera is known as the Closer in Yankee games because he would successfully close the deal for the Yankees and win   games.  He has gone from saving games to saving souls now.  It is an incredible story of opportunity in America where a person took a   chance at dramatically   changing his life and becoming a baseball American legend.

His achievements include being chosen to play in the All-Star games 13 times, a five time world champion, and major league   baseball’s   all   time   saves and   ERA leader.  But the   greatest closer in Major League History grew up in Panama very poor.  How did   the big shots even find this guy?  Fame and fortune never ruined him like it often    does to other rich athletes.  He has strong family ties and has been with his girl that he has known since first grade.  He doesn’t make his money rain on prostitutes, doesn’t take performance   enhancing drugs and doesn’t make a celebrity out of himself.  Yes he is quite different from the average baseball player you see these days.

Mariano Rivera worked on a fishing boat where the captain was his father.  At the time Rivera had hoped to be able to go to mechanic school someday.  But fate intervened.  One day he was playing baseball for an adult league and wasn’t even supposed to be pitching in the game and was noticed and was asked to play with better players in better leagues as he stood up to every challenge even been chosen to be a Yankee.  Mariano Rivera tells us about his remarkable life in detail in his book a new memoir called The Closer which is also his nickname.  This guy deserves to be more famous than Jeater and  Rodriguez but then he never did anything wrong in his life.  It is always the bad boys that get famous.

He signed in 1990 with the New York Yankees for only $2000 that was it.  Mariano had to prove himself to get more money.  When the fisherman from Panama made his way to the United States, he did not speak any English.  Imagine   being a simple guy from a small fishing town getting that telephone call inviting him to the big leagues.  I guess dreams do come true.  He was not a product of any famous baseball camp and did not have a talent scout or promoter to get him noticed.  He moved and never looked back.  Not only did he become a fabulous picture but a beloved teammate that everyone liked.

When it was time for him to retire and all the travel games were   over, his family from the fishing village was still there waiting for him.  They were there for him with every step of his journey. He grew up with Clara and knew her since first grade and they are married now. She is very religious so he bought her a church and is there by her side.  So, bring his number 42 Yankee jersey shirt to Sunday services and not only will you be spiritually renewed but you’ll also meet and probably get your shirt autographed by one of the best Yankee players of alltime.  To me this is one of the greatest ways to start the summer season.

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