When the New York Yankees hit a slump in August last season, 23-year-old Kaitlin Maniscalco came up with a unique plan to help spark the offense.
The day after every game, Maniscalco would run a mile for each run scored and document her efforts on TikTok, where she now boasts more than 20,000 followers after putting the idea into motion less than a year ago.
“I really love the Yankees and I kind of just wanted to do it to show a little bit more light about the situation,” Maniscalco recently told The Post.
The daughter of a “huge” Yankees fan, Maniscalco has long been “enamored” with baseball and played softball at Ithaca College before graduating in 2021.
From there, the Wantagh, New York native landed a job as a production assistant at the YES Network, where she worked as a researcher, highlights coordinator and graphics coordinator.
Though she gained valuable insight at the network, Maniscalco departed YES in February after nearly two years in order to pursue other endeavors, all the while continuing to grow her platform.
“Ultimately I started the brand ‘Ask Kait’ on TikTok to almost practice being a reporter because that is my ultimate goal, which is why I stepped away from behind the scenes at a major network to pursue more reporting in a smaller market and freelance opportunities,” she said, citing Tampa Bay Rays sideline reporter Tricia Whitaker as a sports media personality she admires.
In addition to freelance reporting for Adelphi Softball, Maniscalco does social media “partly full-time” and works as a fitness coach for Orangetheory, which specializes in total-body group workouts.
Depending on her schedule, Maniscalco tries to knock off her Yankees runs in the mornings.
“Typically I wake up, I have normally watched the game the night before, see how many miles I will be running that day, and I’ll try to go on a run typically before 9 a.m., so 7, 8 o’clock,” she said.
“It’s kind of crazy that I’ve centered around my days to just running these miles.”
Since gaining more traction on Twitter — where the Talkin’ Yanks account tweeted one of her running videos to their 196,000 followers earlier this month — Maniscalco has enjoyed connecting with fans of other MLB franchises, some of whom are even following in her footsteps.
“What’s even cooler is that there are a lot of fans from different teams that are tagging me in their videos and they’re also running a mile for every run their team scores the night before,” she said.
“I have some funny Red Sox fans that are saying, ‘Ugh, only two miles today’ because they can’t seem to score enough runs, but thanks ‘Ask Kait’ for the inspiration, so, it’s really cool that this little idea that I had is helping people get into running. I love to run, I think it’s a great form of exercise, so, it’s a lot of fun.”
With the Yankees currently second in the AL East standings at 11-7, Maniscalco has already pondered what her run could look like if the Bombers scored 20 runs in a game.
“I have thought of some ideas that maybe I could get some of the followers involved that also love running. We could kind of tag-team, I’ll take three, someone else will take three, and we can, as a collective Yankee fan group, complete the 20 miles,” she said with a laugh.
In the case of a doubleheader, however, Maniscalco is still coming up with a game plan.
“It was funny, MLB Network was talking about it a couple days ago… and they were saying, ‘What happens if there’s a doubleheader,’ and I said, out of everything, I actually didn’t factor in the doubleheaders yet, so I’m still brainstorming on how to get two games complete.”
At the end of the day, Maniscalco is humbled to see how her efforts have initiated a conversation within MLB fandom.
“I’m just trying to grow the baseball community as a whole and it’s helping the Yankees as well because I think a lot of people are tuning in, going, ‘Oh my gosh, I wonder how many miles that poor girl is going to run tomorrow,’” she said with a chuckle.
With the Yankees closing out a three-game series against the Los Angeles Angels on Thursday, followed by a trio of matchups against the Toronto Blue Jays this weekend, Maniscalco might have a busy few days ahead.