Baseball is a game of failure. It is inevitable that ALL players will fail.
What separates the average players, from the great players is their ability to deal with failure.
Think about this common scenario at the ball field:
-1st at bat of the game
-Player takes first pitch fastball for a strike
-Players fouls off second fastball down the opposite field foul line
-Player takes strike 3 - a back door slider that was 1 ball outside
-Player slams bat down and mumbles something to the umpire on the way back to the dugout
-Coach yells at the umpire that the pitch was outside
-On deck back batter says "your good" as player storms past
-Mom yells at the umpire "the pitch was outside"
-Dad yells at player to "swing the bat"
-Players takes a deep breath after getting rung up for strike 3
-Coach yells - lot of game left - we are putting together at bats today
-Players tells on deck hitter to jump on the fast ball early in the count and make sure he is covering 1 ball outside with 2 strikes
-Mom and Dad yell get him next time
-Player develops a game plan for next at bat
This scenario happens multiple times in every game. The two reactions are completely opposing. To a seasoned coach it is painfully clear that Reaction 2 is the path to creating the more successful player. Yet - Reaction 1 is by far the more prevalent.
So next time you find yourself in this situation -
1. take a deep breath
2. think about what you can learn from the situation to make you a better player
3. think about what information you can convey to your team to make them more successful
4. if you are a coach or parent - make a comment that helps your player focus on the solution
Hard 90 Baseball believes that the mental game - the 6th tool - is a critical element to success in baseball and in life. If you are interested in this type of training - check out our teams High School and Youth.