The Closer

( 24 )

Overview

The bestselling memoir from the greatest relief pitcher of all time.

He is listed along with Ruth, Mantle, Gehrig, and DiMaggio as a top-five Yankee of all time. He is the man who has intimidated thousands of batters by merely opening a bullpen door. Rivera is also a man of God and family whose contributions to charity and community ensure a meaningful life long after his time as The Closer is over.

Now he tells his full story in this widely ...

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The Closer

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Overview

The bestselling memoir from the greatest relief pitcher of all time.

He is listed along with Ruth, Mantle, Gehrig, and DiMaggio as a top-five Yankee of all time. He is the man who has intimidated thousands of batters by merely opening a bullpen door. Rivera is also a man of God and family whose contributions to charity and community ensure a meaningful life long after his time as The Closer is over.

Now he tells his full story in this widely acclaimed instant bestseller: the championships, the bosses (including The Boss), the rivalries, the struggles of being a Latino baseball player in the United States, and of maintaining Christian values in professional athletics. He discusses his drive to win, the secrets behind his legendary composure, what it's like to run up to that mound with the game—or the season—squarely on his shoulders.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
05/12/2014
From humble roots in Panama, Mariano "Mo" Rivera went on to become the greatest closer in baseball history, notching 652 total saves, 13 all-star appearances, and five World Series rings with the New York Yankees over 18 seasons. But in this entertaining, admirably subdued autobiography, the glory is God's: Rivera's story brims with examples of his faith. Sure, there is plenty of baseball for fans to feast on, too. The pitcher tells stories about his teammates (including Derek Jeter, A-Rod, and Joe Torre); championship moments, including the 2000 subway series against the Mets, and the startling game-seven loss in 2001 to the Arizona Diamondbacks; as well as instances of heated pitching rivalries against the Red Sox. He also recalls struggling through injuries, including an elbow issue that threatened his career early on and a blown knee that almost ended his career in 2012. Intensely competitive and a gifted athlete, Rivera will delight baseball fans. But the memories recounted here—both on the field and off—ultimately reveal something deeper: Rivera's almost incredible humility, unshakeable faith, and devotion to his family (he married his childhood sweetheart, Clara). In an age of bravado and bluster in professional sports, he is one of the few athletes who has earned a right to brag. Yet Rivera's elegance and class manage to somehow outshine his accomplishments. (May 6)
From the Publisher
"This man is greatness personified.... There has never been anyone like this. And it's likely there never will be." — ESPN.com

"Mariano Rivera has become a kind of living god of baseball." — New York Times

Kirkus Reviews
2014-05-06
Baseball's greatest relief pitcher reflects on his just-concluded surefire Hall of Fame career.When a modern-day ballplayer insists he doesn't play for money, that personal statistics don't matter, or that he's never cheated, heads will shake and eyes will likely roll. It's a measure of the esteem in which he's held that Rivera tends to be believed. Over his 19-year career with the Yankees, Rivera became the all-time saves leader and won five World Series. Along the way, he conducted himself with such humility that he earned the love of his teammates, the deep respect of opponents and the admiration of fans. This memoir demonstrates why. With the help of Coffey (co-author, with R.A. Dickey: Wherever I Wind Up, 2012, etc.), Rivera recounts his childhood in Panama, his progress as "a bottom-of-the-barrel" prospect to and through the major leagues, and his inviolable game-day routine. He touches on his many, thrilling career highlights, but he spends as much time on those occasions where, as the most reliable closer in the game, he failed. It's no surprise to read his admiring, affectionate assessments of teammates—Jorge Posada, Andy Pettitte, Paul O'Neill, Bernie Williams and especially Derek Jeter—and of his respect for opponents like Edgar Martinez and Dustin Pedroia, but Rivera makes a place for less-glittering names as well: his mentor Chico Heron, his saintly wife, Clara, Yankee trainer Gene Monahan and minor league teammate Tim Cooper. Rivera mildly criticizes his high school math teacher, an anonymous Westchester County homeowner, Roger Clemens, Alex Rodriguez and Robinson Cano but otherwise saves any harsh remarks for himself, "an imperfect man on an imperfect journey." The author's preternatural calm clearly stems from a deep religious faith some nonbelievers will find disquieting, explaining his devastating cut fastball as a gift from God, his belief in miracles and his conviction that the Holy Spirit once spoke to him on the mound.Will be devoured by Yankees loyalists and happily sampled by all baseball fans.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781478979029
  • Publisher: Hachette Audio
  • Publication date: 5/6/2014
  • Format: CD
  • Edition description: Unabridged
  • Pages: 6
  • Sales rank: 111,152
  • Product dimensions: 5.20 (w) x 5.80 (h) x 0.80 (d)

Meet the Author

Mariano Rivera was a New York Yankee for nineteen seasons. He is Major League Baseball's all-time saves and ERA leader, a thirteen-time All-Star, and a five-time World Champion.

Wayne Coffey is one of the country's most acclaimed sports journalists. A writer for the New York Daily News, he cowrote R. A. Dickey's bestselling Wherever I Wind Up and is the author of the New York Times bestseller The Boys of Winter.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 24 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(18)

4 Star

(4)

3 Star

(0)

2 Star

(0)

1 Star

(2)

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 24 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted May 8, 2014

    I Also Recommend:

    I am not a big baseball fan, but I watch it enough to know who M

    I am not a big baseball fan, but I watch it enough to know who Mariano Rivera is. I was very intrigued to read about his life. It is a true rags to riches story of success. Rivera is a humble man who has never let success go to his head and his story is very fulfilling to read.

    6 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 8, 2014

    For this life-long Yankee fan, The Closer is the perfect way to

    For this life-long Yankee fan, The Closer is the perfect way to re-experience the greatest years in our team's history. And what a surprise Mariano Rivera turns out to be when you really get to know him. Yes, he's quiet and humble. But he's also tough. And smart. I just love this book. Glory days.

    4 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 18, 2014

    Great read

    One of the most down to earth books ever. For all his accolades, Rivera proves himself an example to future MLB players and youth leagues,

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 13, 2014

    I am not a Yankee fan. I was Mets and am a fan. I was the first

    I am not a Yankee fan. I was Mets and am a fan. I was the first game. I didn't like what happened in the 70's.
     Now I stated all that in order to say this. Mariano is an exceptional man period. He is a very gentle,
    humble, bright man who worked how to become the great pitcher he was. It also a throwback to the
     days when the Yankees were respected off the field also. This book is just so good in the accounting 
    of how he became the man and player he was and remains. It is a book full of honor, grace, respect,
    manners that reflected the man and the team. It is a joy to read!

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted May 28, 2014

    Love it

    I have so much passion for reading, but reading from a legendary closer is a whole differnt thing. Mariano Rivara is one of the most humble graceful people on Earth

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 17, 2014

    I was a huge Mariano fan! The book is very interesting & wor

    I was a huge Mariano fan! The book is very interesting & worth reading.
     It was worth taking my picture with him. 
    My only concern of negativity with Barnes & Noble was during the picture session, you could not bring a bookbag into the store.
    I left mine outside (with the others) there were badges security officers outside B & N. After the picture session, I ran outside & luckily no one pilfered my bag!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted July 27, 2014

    Great

    Great book

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  • Posted July 25, 2014

    Behind the headlines

    If all record-setting Hall of Famers are like Mariano Rivera, they are not only accomplished athletes but paragons of human beings. What the reader sees in The Closer is a committed team player who never forgets his humble beginnings or his religious beliefs. Rivera's tenure with the Yankees parallels the team's ascendance in baseball after a long absence from an accustomed reign. Whether that success evolves from Mariano's outstanding ability or the convergence of several players is never discussed. We read of the Yankee's success through the development of the greatest closer in history as he recounts mainly post-season competition and in-season turning-points. This autobiography is not 270 pages of boring ball/strike counts for outs. Rivera pulls aside the curtain for glimpses at the invisible part of baseball, behind the injuries, before the spotlight shines, plans and intentions and motives that create athletic success: the recipe for team greatness. For Rivera team success trumps all and God is in charge. Both ideas flow from his love of baseball and his humility that his God-given talent is not a source of pride. In an era of athletes skirting and defying rules and demanding special privileges for their physical prowess, Mariano Rivera stands above all as a role model who might turn athletes away from one-ups-man-ship and back to sportsmanship.

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  • Posted June 20, 2014

    more from this reviewer

    Father's Day Present

    Gave it to my dad.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 20, 2014

    Excellent!

    This is a baseball story. His timing allows me to remember the persons and problems facing players. He, understandably writes from his 30+ years with the Yankees. I was impressed with the fact that he is a Christian and played and respected accordingly. He couldn't speak and English when he came to the US as a teenager!! A BIGGY in itself.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted June 20, 2014

    Not recommend

    I did not finish it. Disappointing

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  • Posted June 18, 2014

    more from this reviewer

    Rating:   5 of 5 stars (outstanding) Review: From humble beg

    Rating:  
    5 of 5 stars (outstanding)




    Review:
    From humble beginnings as the son of a fisherman in Panama to becoming, according to most, the best relief pitcher in the history of baseball, Mariano Rivera tells his story in “The Closer.”  This book is much like many other memoirs written by players with assistance from professional writers in that the player looks back fondly at his playing days and many of the teammates and other people who helped him become a star in his chosen sport.




    However, what makes this autobiography stand out is that Rivera shows that his persona as a member of the New York Yankees, humble and thankful for his talent, is who he really is as a person.  This is brought out by his frequent references to two topics that are important parts of his life.  They are his faith in the Lord and the devotion to his wife Clara. Rivera often refers to his faith as his means of dealing with awful occurrences (9/11 and the loss of two family members due to electrocution in a swimming pool), trying to come to grips with understanding others (use of PED’s for example) or even just how he keeps his work ethic and how he deals with low points of his career, such as the seventh game of the 2001 World Series.  




    His devotion to Clara is also evident throughout the book as well.  He does consult and pray with her for many personal issues.   One touching part that struck me was when he wanted to take a leave of absence from the Yankees on a road trip to attend his son’s elementary school graduation.  The manager, Joe Torre, didn’t want to approve but knew that he couldn’t stop Rivera if that is what he wanted to do.  Rivera turned to Clara for assistance in making the decision and thanked her for that and everything else she did for him during their marriage.  By the way – Rivera stayed with the team for the road trip.




    Rivera doesn’t talk a lot about controversial topics such as PED’s but when he does express an opinion in the book; he is open and honest and doesn’t care about the reaction.  The best example of this is when he stated that he would like to have Dustin Pedroia of the Boston Red Sox as the second baseman on his team.  This upset many Yankee fans – how dare a lifetime Yankee player say a RED SOX player is the best?  But Rivera just was honest in his opinion on this topic as he was with any other one.




    The book follows his chronological path during his youth, his tryout with the Yankees in Panama and his storied Yankee career.  He doesn’t get too detailed in recounting seasons and even skims or ignores milestones he achieved.   The game in 2011 in which he became the all time saves leader is worth two paragraphs.  Yet, he moves the reader in which he gracefully and humbly acknowledges all that he has done and praises teammates and foes alike.   Some of these passages are heart-tugging.  I admit that my eyes moistened when he recalled being removed from the game in his last Yankee Stadium appearance in 2013 by teammates Andy Pettitte and Derek Jeter.  He was sobbing in their arms on the mound and his recollection in the book of that moment is one that the reader will know is truly heartfelt and emotional.




    The entire book is a great read for baseball fans, especially Yankee fans.  I highly recommend this for anyone who wants to read about not only one of the greatest players to ever play the game, but also one of the best human beings to play the game as well. 




    Did I skim?
    No




    Pace of the book:  
    Excellent.  Because Rivera doesn’t break down every detail of his childhood, his personal life or each season he pitched for the Yankees, the reader will move through the book with amazing speed.  




    Do I recommend?  
    Yes.  Whether the reader is a baseball fan, one who likes to read biographies or memoirs or even just to read about someone who is true to his faith, this book will be a fine choice.

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  • Posted June 18, 2014

    My son loved it!

    I bought 'The Closer' for my 21 year old son. He's a college baseball player and needless to say, a lifelong baseball fan. He loved this book and highly recommends you read.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted June 17, 2014

    more from this reviewer

    Before I go into my review, let me make it very clear that I am

    Before I go into my review, let me make it very clear that I am a die-hard METS fan. Living in NYC and having friends and family who are fans of the Yankees, I've been to many games in the Bronx. I'm in my early 50's.

    I just finished reading "The Closer" by Mariano Rivera. As a 51 year old who has been a life time resident of NYC, I LOVED it. Yes, it is filled with page after page of details about games that Mr. Rivera pitched in. There are locker room discussions, and private thoughts in there as well. Through the pages, you read about his connection with God, with his family and the Yankees. You feel his pain, his pride, his accomplishments, his spirituality and his humbleness.. You are there with him through it all. He grows up in this book – and not just because of his age. The experiences, the nuances are all there.

    While it is a book that any Yankee fan would appreciate, I think that those of us who are in our mid-forties and above, who were "with" Mariano from the beginning of his career will really love it. After reading the book, I realized that I was there at so many of the "moments" that shaped him and his career. As a New Yorker, even if you were not present at one of those moments, they were replayed for us on the evening news over and over again.

    Mariano Rivera is what baseball was and should be about -- the love of the game. This is a book that I think every baseball fan will enjoy and every Yankee fan will love

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 16, 2014

    Recommended

    I am a true and loyal Yankee fan.
    I am really enjoying this book

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  • Posted June 13, 2014

    Not a Yankee fan, but love Mariano

    I admire Mariano so much and would have liked to have learned more about his personal life and family. After getting past the first few chapters, there was just too much detail about different games. That got to be tedious after awhile. I'm sure avid Yankee fans and baseball players get a lot more out of that than the average reader. Overall, though, well done for an athlete.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 30, 2014

    Not just for fans of the Yankees

    Loved this book! Mariano tells his amazing story with insight and humor.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 8, 2014

    Would love to write a review but B&N tech support still can'

    Would love to write a review but B&N tech support still can't figure out why this isn't working on my MAC/iTunes/iPod. Very frustrating to spend 20 minutes on the phone with tech support only to find he is reading the troubleshooting text that I already tried the night before. A waste of time and lost money because the MP3 cannot be returned.

    0 out of 18 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 11, 2014

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted August 4, 2014

    No text was provided for this review.

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