In All About Mariano Rivera, early readers will learn all about this baseball legend. Born in a poor Panamanian fishing village, Mariano River Jr. did not think he would grow up to be a famous New York Yankees pitcher. In fact, he thought that he would follow his father into the fishing industry. After he replaced a poorly-performing pitcher during an amateur baseball game, the Yankees scout saw his talent.
Mariano Rivera would go on to become a thirteen-time All-Star and five-time World Series champion. He holds two MLB records and has won many other awards. In 2019 he became the 1st player unanimously voted into the Baseball Hall of Fame!
Derek Jeter called Mariano the most mentally tough teammate he ever played with. Rivera easily rose to being a team leader and helping the team recover from losses with dignity, and celebrate wins with humility. When once asked to describe his job, Mariano simply stated, I get the ball, I throw the ball, and then I take a shower.
Since retiring, Mariano has devoted himself to philanthropy and his churches. He and his wife Clara sponsor college scholarships, a foundation to provide underprivileged children with educations, and various other projects.
As reported on baseball-reference.com Mariano holds the following records: Career Saves 652, Saves by a right-hander career 652, Games finished career 952, Games, American League career, 1,115, Relief appearances AL career 1,105.
About the Authors
Jorge Iber is a Professor of History at Texas Tech University in Lubbock, Texas. He is a graduate of the University of Utah. His area of research is the role of Latinos and Latinas in American sport. While he is a huge baseball fan, most of his studies focus on this group’s history in American football in Texas and the Southwest.
Raquel Iber has been an elementary school teacher in the Lubbock area for almost two decades. She is a graduate of Florida International University and completed her teacher certification at Texas Tech University. She is very passionate about helping students fall in love with reading. She grew up in New Jersey, and is a huge fan of the Yankees and Mariano Rivera.