Opening Day is next week! After realizing this, I started to think about all of the lessons I have learned from the game of baseball and how it can be applied to every day life. While thinking about this, I remembered a piece of writing I had started at the end of last baseball season that had To Be Continued at the end. Knowing that the new season is less than a week away gave me the jump start I needed to finish it…
Baseball… America’s favorite pastime. It goes with hot dogs, apple pie, and Chevrolet. It’s about the joys of victory and heartache of defeat. The game has everything you need!
Music… “It’s time for the 7th inning stretch! Everyone get ready to sing Take Me Out to the Ballgame!”
Drama… “Bottom of the ninth. Down by 1. A runner on 3rd. 3 balls and 2 strikes… Here’s the wind-up and the pitch…”
Action… “And the pitcher hits the batter in the hip! Oh that’s gotta hurt! The pitcher and hitter are now exchanging words. The hitter is approaching the mound… And the benches are clearing!”
Victory… “Here’s the wind-up and the pitch, a big swing and… that ball is out of here! Talk about a walk-off homer! That was a moonshot!”
Defeat… “Here’s the windup and the pitch. A big swing and… a miss. And that’s the ballgame folks. They came close but not close enough.”
Some of life’s biggest lessons can be taught through baseball and from some of the greats who have played.
Lesson 1: Cheating has consequences. ‘Cough’ Astros ‘Cough’ ‘Cough’
Many times when it is discovered that a team or player has cheated at the game, they are not only fined or suspended, but opposing pitchers exact their revenge with a well placed pitch that is just “a little” inside. This type of revenge often leads to a benches clearing brawl.
Lesson 2: When you are on a team, the needs of the team outweigh the needs of the individual.
In 1939, Lou Gherig voluntarily ended his streak of playing 2,310 games in a row because it was in the best interest of the team. He didn’t keep playing just to prove he could, he wanted his team to win. That is the true definition of: “There’s no I in TEAM”.
Lesson 3: Find the silver lining in everything.
Lou Gherig ended his streak because of his failing health. Instead of being angry at the world, he ended his farewell speech with these words, “I may have had a tough break, but I have an awful lot to live for.”
Lesson 4: Even after a tough loss, there is another game tomorrow.
Just because one bad thing happens to you, you don’t have to give up. Tomorrow is a new day to try again.
Lesson 5: Take chances.
As Babe Ruth said, “Never let the fear of striking out keep you from playing the game.” Why should failure stop you from trying?!? You can always learn something from failure.
I’m sure that there are many more lessons that can be learned from baseball, but they will have to wait for another day!