NEW YORK -- Mets infielder T.J. Rivera's parents mean everything to him, and his mom, Nilsa, holds a special place in his heart.
"I'm really big on family," Rivera said. "I wouldn't be here today if it wasn't for them. The support she had for me -- a lot of times it's your dad only teaching you sports and things, but I really had both of them. She was always there for me. She's a big softball player, so she would always play with me whenever I wanted to when I was a kid growing up.
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"And then obviously all the sacrifices she made throughout the years -- coming straight from work, dropping me off at games -- you don't think about it as a kid, but then you start to think about all the sacrifices she made for me. It's crazy. I don't know how she did it, putting out the money for me to play and for me to be seen, doing all the things for me to get to college. I can't thank her enough for everything she's done. She's been my rock for sure."
Anthony DiComo has covered the Mets for MLB.com since 2008. Follow him on Twitter @AnthonyDiComo and Facebook, and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.