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What’s In a Name?


Slide on over to SB Nation Longform and check out Joe DePaolo’s profile of Mariano Rivera III:

The father is here to cheer on his 20-year-old son — a redshirt sophomore for the Gaels. Listed on the Iona roster as Mariano Rivera, the son’s legal name is actually Mariano Rivera III (although most everybody, including dad, refers to him as “Jr.”). Beyond the name and the fact that they both pitch, there are other similarities between the two. There are also many differences, one of which is that the son is a starter — at least while he is in college. “He’s too good to be a reliever at this level,” says Iona head coach Pat Carey.

That’s an assessment the scouts seem to agree with. After Rivera records the third out, the men put down their radar guns and dutifully record the pitch in their notebooks. They offer no expression, but can’t help but to have been impressed by what they’ve seen so far. This is a good lineup that Rivera has set aside in the first, all via strikeout. Seton Hall’s high-powered offense entered the contest averaging 7.8 runs per game. That offense has helped propel them to a 16-4 record and the No. 19 spot in ESPN’s unofficial power rankings going into today’s game. Iona, which plays in the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference, seldom plays a team of this caliber. It is a rare chance for the scouts to see what Rivera can do against a lineup with some punch.

As he makes his way back to the dugout, he avoids eye contact with the scouts, but he is fully aware of their presence.

“Twenty something scouts,” he says. “Most scouts ever in my life. Obviously, it’s in the back of my mind.”

Rivera takes a seat and grabs as much solitude as he can in the cramped Iona dugout. This is hardly out of character for him. Rivera is well liked among this group, and treated like just one of the guys. He is close friends with some teammates, but he tends to set himself apart, and sits alone between innings.

[Photo Credit: Holly Tonini]


1 Bronx Boy in NC   ~  May 28, 2014 2:27 pm

I love the fact that I know about this now, but the very vehicle of my knowing is exactly the kind of attention the kid doesn't need. It sounds as if he's learning and working and, whatever comes, is making the most of his opportunity. I wish him well whether or not I never hear of him again.

Also love the commenter who said this was "too long." It's the "longform" site, numb-nuts.

2 Jon DeRosa   ~  May 28, 2014 2:41 pm

Couple of weeks ago he pitched at Monmouth, and my brother got to see him. Cool game, hard thrower, but Monmouth hit him hard and beat him soundly.

3 glennstout   ~  May 28, 2014 4:27 pm

Thanks, Bronx Boy (I edited the story). He did agreed to the story, primarily, I think, to help Iona, which is trying to build a program.

He's definitely a project - the scouts see that, and with his genealogy and relative lack of experience, worth a flyer, probably round 15-20. Will be interesting to see if the Yankees bite. As Joaquin Andujar used to say, "You can sum it up in one word - youneverknow."

4 rbj   ~  May 28, 2014 4:50 pm

Giants no hitting the Cubbies through 6. But Timmy is out of the game after 92 pitches.

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