Baseball Magazine

Game Face

By Meachrm @BaseballBTYard

Game face

(Photo by Tameisha1)

I was watching a game on TV recently between the St. Louis Cardinals and the San Francisco Giants.  It was the top of the ninth inning with the home team Giants winning by a couple runs.  Yadier Molina was up with two outs and an 0-2 count and nobody on base.  The Giants clown - Brian Wilson - was pitching.  I'm sorry.  Did I say clown?  I meant to say closer.  Anyway, Molina worked the count to 2-2 and the TV camera zoomed in on his face after the pitch.  The look in his eyes was priceless.  I wish I had taped the game and had the ability to stop the tape and save the split second photo of his face at that moment.  The picture of Yadier Molina (above) is the closest I could find but even though he has a serious look in his eyes, it still doesn't come close to what his look was like after that 2-2 pitch.  I'm not a mind reader but I'd be willing to bet his thinking underneath that look went something like this ...
English translation:"You son (CENSORED).  There is absolutely no (CENSORED) way you are getting this (CENSORED) ball past me.  If you throw that (CENSORED) ball anywhere near this (CENSORED) plate, I'm going to smoke it right back at that stupid (CENSORED) beard of yours." 
As I said, I'm not a mind reader so the exact wording might be off.  I seriously doubt that it is off by much though.  However, I can absolutely beyond a doubt guarantee that his thinking was NOT ...
"Boy, he really has nasty stuff tonight.  I don't know if I can hit that.  I hope he makes a mistake because I really don't want strike out to end the game."
Game faceThere is, of course, a world of difference between the two statements.  It doesn't take a brilliant mind to determine which set of thoughts is more likely to produce a successful outcome.  The look that accompanies the first set of thoughts may be very tough to put into words when describing it to others but you absolutely know it when you see it.  The look that accompanies the second set of thoughts is also immediately recognizable.  Just look at the picture of the deer.
The next issue becomes ... can that look and the attitude behind it be taught?  I'm not so sure.
By the way...
Yadier Molina fouled off a couple pitches and then walked.  That began a rally that tied the game and later ended in a victory for the Cardinals in extra innings.

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