Love stories like this…Back in the day we used to cover Little League and one of the seven leagues that we covered was South El Monte National that played at New Temple Park. Manny Acosta played shortstop and pitched for the SEM National Pirates and had the word “potential” written all over him.
A lot of times though (unfortunately too many) potential is never lived up too. The light burns out, things happen and the dream just fades away. Not so with Manny Acosta. He went on to star at South El Monte High School in three sports and parlayed that into a baseball scholarship at Cal State LA. Acosta completed his four years of NCAA eligibility and his college baseball career is now complete. As a four year starter, he started in over 200 consecutive games and led the Golden Eagles to a California Collegiate Athletic Association tournament championship in 2013.
Acosta was a two time CCAA Player of the Week and also made the All-CCAA Conference list twice. He was the team Rookie of the Year in 2011 and Hitter of the Year in 2014. He ended his college career with a .320 batting average, a .380 slugging average and a .384 on base average. Oh, and by the way he earned a Bachelor of Science Degree in Kinesiology. Acosta hasn’t completely ruled out a shot in the Major Leagues -he could still land a try out – but if that doesn’t work out he may utilize his collge degree to go to medical school.
I ran into Manny a few weeks ago where he was coaching football for South El Monte at the SGV Shootout. You know, he needed something to do in his spare time.
And all of this started on the fields of New Temple Park in South El Monte…and I was there to see it. I just love watching a kid that I covered as a 12-year old go on to have this type of success – on the field and in the classroom. For Manny Acosta, the best is yet to come.