Baseball Magazine

Breaking Games up into Sets

By Meachrm @BaseballBTYard

Happy St. Patrick’s Day!!

The other day I was watching a spring training game on TV.  Orel Hershiser and the other announcer were talking about how the pitcher in the game had a history of giving up runs early before settling down.  The other

The first set is over.  Now win the next two!

The first set is over. Now win the next two!

announcer asked Hershiser how he personally dealt with giving up a number of runs in the first couple innings.

Hershiser said his strategy was always to break up games into three sets.  His goal was to win each set.  If he didn’t do well in the first set – the first three innings – his focus shifted to making sure he won the second and third sets – innings 4-6 and 7-9 respectively.  He said this kept him mentally sharp throughout the game.  If he started poorly then he had a clean slate and a brand new game starting in the fourth inning.  If he started the game well, the fourth inning was again a clean slate which forced him to not coast and get lazy with a lead.  

Great advice!

The same strategy can be tweaked to work with 7 inning games and do not have to just apply to pitchers.  The mind set of the entire team can benefit from this strategy so as to never get complacent when ahead or to never give up when behind.

Tomorrow’s post:  Throw like you pitch

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