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(Not Me)

As winter approaches in the States, life out here in Australia keeps getting better.  This week included two more wins for the Manly Eagles, my first attempt at body-boarding and a great new book.

We took care of business this week on the diamond with two hard fought wins against Macarthur, the second place team in the league. On Wednesday night, Jim “It’s Miller Time!” Miller, came out and threw a great game. Aided by a few costly errors, we snuck four runs up on the board and stole the victory. This afternoon, with an opportunity for the series sweep, four pitchers, led by Adam Brown”ie,” battled their asses off. It took a full team effort, spearheaded by head coach and game MVP Tim Harradine, to get the win. Jimbo Miller, our mid-week starter, pitched a couple innings in relief and continues to show his value to the team every game. For the week, I had three hits in eight at-bats. I swiped a couple bases today and played some solid defense. I really feel like I left too many at-bats out on the field this week so I’m looking forward to getting back to work this week and improving. Back to the cage and the gym tomorrow!

On Thursday, I had my first go at body-boarding. I figured that it would be a good introduction to surfing and help me get a better feel for the waves. Turns out, it’s not as easy as it looks. After forty-five minutes of getting absolutely pummeled by water, I had to call it a day. Let’s just chalk that one up to the tide or something. I will not be deterred!

Also this week, I started reading MindSet by Carol Dweck. In it, Dweck describes the fixed and growth mindsets. People with fixed mindsets believe that talent is inherited. Failure, then, tells you something permanent about yourself. Fixed mindset people will, therefore, avoid challenging tasks because they may reveal inadequacies and threaten one’s identity. People with the growth mindset, however, believe that talent is earned from hard work and perseverance. Failure is merely feedback and an opportunity for improvement. Growth mindset people will, therefore, seek out challenging tasks in order to stretch themselves. While it’s easy to see which mindset is better for development and progress, I know, personally, it’s not always so easy to embrace failure.

Tomorrow, I will be starting my two-week fitness certification course in downtown Sydney. I’m really excited about getting back in the classroom, learning about sports, and meeting some more Aussies.

Another week has gone by without receiving the call from the Australian Baseball League. I went out to the game on Friday and I know I can compete with those guys. Until the call comes, though, I’ll keep plugging away. The beach and my teammates make it a lot easier to stomach.

Finally, I hope everyone is enjoying my posts. Please let me know if there is anything more you want to know or anything you think I could change to make this blog better. You can email me or just leave a quick comment. Until next week!

Manly vs. Blue Sox

Posted: October 21, 2012 in Uncategorized

Former Met’s and curent Blue Sox’s pitcher Dae-Sung Koo facing Randy Johnson

 

After being told that I didn’t make the Blue Sox roster on Tuesday, could I have possibly asked for a better opportunity than a game against them?

The Blue Sox started Chirs Oxspring, who pitched in the Major Leagues and played for the Nashville Sounds on his way (so I probably got him to sign a few baseball cards back in the day). After our lead-off hitter hit a ground ball on the first pitch, I came up to bat. First pitch was a fast ball down in the zone, strike 1. Second pitch looked great! Out of the hand, I’m thinking, “I’m going to crush this,” I swing, and all of a sudden I realize it is a change-up. I’m not even close to touching it. Down no balls to two strikes, I go into battle mode. Oxspring winds up and delivers. Another change-up. This time, I recognize it a little better, get the barrel on the ball and hit a triple down the right field line. Not quite the big leagues, but it still felt pretty good.

We ended up fighting our way to a 2-2 tie (they big-leagued us and stopped the game when they ran out of pitching). They started a line-up full of current and ex-professional players, including Chris Oxspring and Dae-Sung Koo, who is featured in the above video. We came out swinging and played a good game. Our two pitchers, who will be pitching for the Blue Sox when their season officially starts, pitched a combined eight innings, giving up only two runs. We have a few current and ex-professionals on our roster too but really, everyone down the line-up hit the ball well and we put a lot of pressure on their defense and pitching staff throughout the game. Personally, I had three hits in five at-bats. I drove in our second run, just barely getting a ball over the second baseman’s glove. I played third base and made some really nice plays defensively. While we obviously hoped to take the win, it was a good battle and all of us were happy with the way we competed.

While I will not be starting the season on the Blue Sox roster, I think yesterday was a step in the right direction. I was able to show their coaching staff what I can do and that I can help them win games down the line. Since I still don’t have much control over what happens there, I’m just going to continue to focus on my club games and keep swinging the stick!

In life outside of baseball, I finally found an apartment to live in for at least a few months. It’s a five minute walk to the beach, the gym, and the grocery store. What more could I ask for? I’m not sure if I’m going to keep at my “construction” job. I don’t really have any responsibility so it’s pretty boring. I’m going to look into interning with a performance psychologist and a few other different things that are more interesting to me.

It’s homecoming for Columbia today, so all my friends from college are back up in New York having a good time together. Days like today make me miss being back in the US. Instead of partying with all those guys, I will be participating in my first “Bowls Day.” All the guys from my club team are heading out to the park to drink beer and lawn bowl. Not quite homecoming, but I’m excited!

Our next game is Wednesday. We will continue getting after it and keep playing good baseball!

Until next time.