A couple of weeks ago I was in the stands at Turner Field for the Braves vs. Cardinals wildcard playoff game, or what is now known as the ‘infield fly game.’
In the bottom of the 8th inning the Braves had runners on 1st & 2nd and only one out. Shortstop Andrelton Simmons hit a fly ball to left field and the ball dropped in between the Cardinals shortstop and left fielder for a base hit. However, at the last second the umpire ruled it was an infield fly, and Simmons was out.
Fast forward to game 2 of the ALCS between the Tigers and the Yankees. In the top of the 8th inning, the Tiger’s shortstop Omar Infante overran second base after a hit to right field. Yankee outfielder Nick Swisher threw the ball to Robinson Cano and got the out. However, the umpire ruled Infante safe. So instead of three outs, there were two outs with runners on 1st & 2nd.
In both situations an umpire made a bad call. However the game didn’t stop because of these calls. The Braves still had another batter at the plate and a chance to cut into the Cardinal’s lead. The Yankees just had to get one more out and the inning was over. The players had no control over what was called. The only thing they could control was the next play, and there is always a next play. “So What, Next Pitch”
Bad calls unfortunately happen, and not just in playoff baseball games. We don’t have any control over these instances. We don’t get the job, or our offer is refused. We get rejected. The weather turns ugly. Our boss changes around the work schedule that interferes with our plans.
The reality is that when these things that happen, they are out of our control, but there is always a “next” play. The question is how do we handle those bad calls? It is up to us to control how we respond when these situations occur. If you are carrying that ‘bad call’ with you throughout the day, how effective can you really be? You can’t go up to bat against that bad call. You have to forget what is in the past, and press on toward the goal.
“Act as if nothing has happened, no matter what has happened.”