He is known by many names: The Great One, The Sandman, The Hammer of God and Mo. Arguably the best closing pitcher in the history of the game of baseball, Mariano Rivera’s life has been far from easy.
Mariano Rivera, the man who intimidated thousands of batters merely by opening a bullpen door, began his incredible journey as the son of a poor Panamanian fisherman. When first scouted by the Yankees, he didn’t even own his own glove. He thought he might make a good mechanic. When discovered, he had never flown in an airplane, had never heard of Babe Ruth, spoke no English and couldn’t imagine Tampa, the city where he was headed to begin a career that would become one of baseball’s most iconic. What he did know: that he loved his family and his then girlfriend, Clara, that he could trust in the Lord to guide him and that he could throw a baseball exactly where he wanted to, every time.
Rivera has had the type of career a baseball player can only dream of—the type of career that owns a special place in Cooperstown. Some say he may be the greatest to ever live. In 2013 he retired after 19 seasons. Join him and Good Morning America news anchor Amy Robach as he tells the full story in his new memoir, The Closer, of where he came from and his game, his family and faith have meant to him every day.