For six months, the banality of being a not-playing soccer player on a lower-division club ate away at Manny. He could go out with his roommates to bars and say he was a Gales player, but no pictures of him in a Gales uniform appeared on TV or the newspaper. The local press simply didn’t care. Nobody was a fan.
In the past eight days he has already won two Olympic golds, achieving the elusive distance-running double of winning both the 5,000 and the 10,000m. And now he is minutes away from completing a treble which everyone watching must realize will almost certainly never be achieved again. This is, by the way, the first time he has ever run a marathon.
My focus was on winning a World Series for the New York Mets, one hundred percent. But even as a big-league sapling, now three full seasons into my career, I still scoured the box scores each day during the season to see how the Red Sox were doing. On some level, I was still that seven-year-old kid from the summer of 1967, pulling for Carl Yastrzemski and the Boston Red Sox.