A Note To the Grind

Let me start off by saying that baseball is the greatest sport in the world. “How is that?” one might ask; obviously either never having played the game, or having played but never was good enough to make it off the bench other than their required two innings or so, which they were mandated to play by their little league sanctioned rules. The people which ironically in life are more than likely those who don’t understand the concept of getting out what you put in. Those who can’t seem to wrap their minds around the fact that the universe rewards those who do right. Those who will sit there and complain about their hourly wages yet won’t take the extra time or effort to do their job any better than what their complacent mind has them doing now. Those who never understood that once you step in the box gripping the handle of that bat, you as an individual are no longer at war with your team; you are in a fight for your team.

This fight will be hard, it will be gruesome. But if you put the time and effort and attitude and preparation into the process leading up to that fight; you will come out on top. This is because if you do things the right way; each and every day; Wanting it more than the next guy; you will come out on top; you will rise; you will be victorious! “Hard work beats talent when talent fails to work hard” is a saying that I have lived my life by. A saying that defines the entire purpose for this so-called “grind” everyone speaks about. But only those who do “grind” truly understand the meaning behind it; almost as if it’s a fading language now of days.

But it is fading. Just not a language. It’s a mindset. A mindset fading away slowly as this new wave of thoughts crash our society. Filling our sports systems with “at least you tried metals” and “maybe next year” ribbons. Rewards and prizes put in place by those who never could. Those who (not necessarily never tried) but never tried hard enough. Those who couldn’t stand watching someone else win over themselves. Those who couldn’t take enough pride in their own work, or the name on the back of their jersey to produce the best possible product with themselves. Those who accepted life as it came; rather than going out and taking the life that they truly desired.

These people, are what are producing this overwhelming sense of entitlement. The entitlement that peaks through when a pitcher gets pulled off the mound; goes into the dugout; throws his glove; and sits there on the bench silently for the rest of the game. Mentally checked out, forgetting that he is not bigger than the game. The natural human selfishness combined with the fashioned complacency of today’s society as a whole; has created a monster of false entitlement; though this monster strikes as a sickness.

The black plague of baseball filling young minds with the unrealistic ideas which will once out of their youth; contaminate their adult, working lives. Though this soon to be contamination which will take place at the workplace can be seen on the diamond.

Now of days when growing up, we are taught about fairness and equality. But the fault within this is the underlying lie being covered up by the adults that life is not fair! But as children how is this to be known? Exactly: It’s not! Given this; how is it fair that little Johnny is the coaches son and plays the entire game every time? Once again: it isn’t.  But that’s just how the cookie crumbles and if you really want to be the star over the coaches son; Ding! Ding! Ding! You’re going to have work for it! But instead of out working and competing against one another; society has taught us to wine and complain about each other instead.

Due to a lack of competitive spirit, the integrity of this great game is being compromised. Why Give 100% like coach is asking for when you can give 50 and still get your snack at the end of each game and your trophy at the end of the season? But now; why give 100 when the guy next to you is only giving 50? And so the domino effect begins to kick in. Soon enough you’ve got 11 out of 12 players giving 50% with the last one left soon to fall to the cancer as well; tearing the team apart piece by piece.

No one wants to give more than they need. And turning the game of “hard ball” soft. That creates a platform of complacency which is to be followed for the rest of your life.

Pete Rose, one of the greatest and hardest players of all time stated, “I’d walk through hell with a gasoline suit on to play baseball.” This passion and love for the game is just not found anymore. Guys aren’t out there because they love the game; they’re out there because they have nothing better to do and thought it would be cool to go hang out with their friends and walk around school knowing all the ladies love themselves a man in some baseball pants. But the game is like that because we let it be. We too are complacent. We; the grinders, don’t speak up. We don’t fight for what we love. We let society steam role us harder than any play at the plate.

We let our teammates do whatever they want because “hey, it’s their life right.” But no. It is not their life! “It”, is your life! Baseball, is your life. So speak up. Go to bat for what you love and separate the men from the boys. Does the game not deserve that? Stop trying to be a decent teammate for your team, and be a decent teammate for your game. Step on toes of those who don’t belong. The picture is bigger. Step into the box.  Because your true team; the baseball purists. Their down right now. 

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