We Bostonians are glued to the set with the Red Sox in the ALCS and true to Red Sox form, it’s never dull. Well, last night the Sox bats were a bit dull and one might say that they’ve been dull since the start of the series, but that’s another topic for another time perhaps.
Game two of the series had the same muted bats throughout the entire game…until the end of course. If you had hung in there until the 8th and 9th inning, you were privileged to witness a most awesome come from behind win. It had it all…drama, tension, pressure and even more pressure. As each batter got up in the 8th, the pressure mounted. Then there was David Ortiz at the plate…bases loaded and two outs. He crushes one over the right field bull pen and clears the bases! The stress and pressure mounts for the Tigers as the momentum shifts, the Sox are energized and the Tigers are wondering what just happened. Gomes hits a deep ground ball to the shortstop and the next thing we see is a throwing error that advances him to second! Maybe the shortstop was forcing his throw….hmmm. Next comes a wild pitch and Gomes jogs to third! The rest is history and we walk off with the win!
The events in the last two innings were so similar to things that happen when we golf, I couldn’t help but comment on it. We add pressure to ourselves and try to force shots in order to make up for missed shots on holes gone by. Not unlike what the shortstop did when trying to throw Gomes out at first. Instead, he “hit the ball in the water” or for him, threw a wild ball to first base. He should have held on to the ball, the runner would have stayed on first and he would have set up for a double play. Instead, the wild throw sent the runner over to second…no more double play option. It’s no different that choosing the percentage shot. Rather than try to send the ball flying through a narrow opening between two trees, punch the ball out into the fairway and set up a great “next shot” to the green. The wild pitch was another interesting event. When a pitcher tries to guide or place the ball to a certain spot, his release will be manufactured and it’s almost always going to result in a wild pitch. It’s no different that a golfer trying to “direct” his or her tee shot. The club face stays open, the ball starts somewhat straight then slices to the exact place you were hoping to avoid. If you trust your skill and swing with freedom and confidence, you’re very likely to have a successful shot rather than an errant shot.
The other observation was the energy shift for the Red Sox. After Ortiz cleared the bases, the bench went crazy as did the fans. Instant energy boost! Instant rush of confidence! Success!!! Don’t we feel that very same thing when we make a long putt or when we save par or even bogie? Success! Instant confidence boost! The Sox built on that confidence boost and won the game. You can take a page out of that book and build on the success you have on the course, wherever they may be. It could be a simple putt or a straight drive or a chip that went as planned. Unlike the ALCS, where it’s the best of seven games, the opportunities for golfers to be successful are endless! Why you ask? Well, every shot is a brand new shot unlike any shot we’ve had before…and of course that gives you the opportunity for making successful golf shots every time you play! Go Red Sox!!