Until Monday, Marisa Arriaga was just an ordinary teenager in Texas who loves softball. But a six-second video of the 16-year-old pulling off an amazing trick with her softball bat, a batting tee and a softball has changed all of that. Now she’s set to appear on Fox News Tuesday morning to talk about it after becoming the darling of the Internet on Monday.
If the video hasn’t shown up in any of your social media feeds yet, view it below. It’s mesmerizing.
Arriaga hails from Cedar Hill, Texas, where she attends school at Townview School of Health Professions, but since the school doesn’t have a softball team, she plays for the Cedar Hill High School team. She also plays on a travel team, the Texas Glory Adkins 18U Gold, which is currently ranked 16th in the country.
She started playing softball at the age of 10, and is a natural right-handed hitter, but bats left-handed instead because, she told Women in the World, it makes her a more unpredictable hitter for opposing pitchers and defenses.
Arriaga’s older sister, Emily, shot the video while she was practicing on their lawn, and Arriaga said she almost didn’t share the clip on social media. But after a friend persuaded her, Arriaga put it on Twitter on June 24. It took two months to get the world’s attention, but now the clip has become such a viral hit that’s it’s been featured on ESPN’s flagship program SportsCenter.
— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) August 24, 2015
Women in the World caught up with Arriaga, who said she hopes to go to college on a softball scholarship, by email to chat about the incredible video.
Women in the World: Amazing trick, Marisa. Tell us how you how came up with it and how long it took to master it.
Marisa Arriaga: I learned each move separately and I decided to put them together. I was just messing around when I was practicing my batting. It took me about 20 tries to master it and even then I debated posting it because I didn’t think that it was that good.
WITW: Talk about how it feels to have a viral video. It’s racked up more than 16,000 likes and eight million loops (so far) on Vine.
MA: It’s crazy! All of my friends have been very supportive.
WITW: Did you know you had a viral video on your hands once you shot it?
MA: When I shot the video, I almost didn’t post it, but my friend Miranda told me that if I didn’t post it she was [going to]. A lot of people viewed my video on Twitter, but it wasn’t until just a few days ago that it got popular again. Other popular pages started posting it and it took off again.
WITW: What do you think of social media and its power? Do you have a favorite social media platform?
MA: I believe that social media is extremely powerful. It is incredible how fast something can spread on the Internet. I prefer to use Twitter more than any other social media.
WITW: What position do you play?
MA: I play outfield, catcher, and middle infield. I am what’s called a utility player, which means that I’ll play wherever the coach needs me.
WITW: Give us some idea of what your stats are like if you have them batting average, home runs, RBIs, etc.
MA: I batted .500 this past season. Both of my first two years in high school I have been selected First Team All District as well as Academic All District. I am right-handed, but I hit from the left side. This gives me the option of slapping or hitting away. This works well for me because many times the opposing team doesn’t think that I can hit for power. They don’t think a girl my size can hit home runs.
WITW: Do you have a softball player that you look up to?
MA: I look up to Morgan McCallum, a University of Kentucky commit. We both play travel ball for the Texas Glory Adkins 18U Gold team. Morgan inspires me to work hard and encourages me to strive to be the best. She is an all-around good person and I am honored to play with her.