October 27, 2014 by Beth Hess
When Derek Jeter retired from baseball earlier this year, he had stepped into a Major League batters box 12,602 times. More than a third of the time, he got on base.
He had great game awareness, ball placement, situational understanding, and pure talent. Unarguably one of baseball’s greats. A future Hall of Famer.
So why did he need Rob Thomson?
Rob Thomson. The Yankees third base coach for the last six seasons.
The one who communicates the plays. The one who dictates a swing vs. a take. The one who signals hit-and-run. The one who relays countless messages to batters and base-runners alike.
The one Derek Jeter deferred to.
Standard rules apply in baseball. 3 strikes for an out. 4 balls is a walk.
The game also has rules of thumb. Typical, but not hard and fast. When the count is 3-0, take a pitch. Don’t bunt with 2 outs.
But most of baseball is about strategy based on the situation. What you did at the last at bat may not work this time.
You have to check with the coach every single visit to the plate. Sometimes every pitch.
Because no matter how much wisdom you have. Or talent. Or luck. Or experience. You still can’t see the whole field all the time. And you aren’t privy to the entire game plan.
God is my Third Base Coach.
He directs my actions. He is the guard at the gate of my lips. Saving me from myself. On my own, I might make decisions for the moment, not for the good of my long-term self.
So I check in. I follow His lead.
(Tomorrow… How can I understand His signs & What does every moment surrender look like for me?)
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