Baseball is still a game. Sometimes we forget that. We scream and yell for robotic perfection from players in a sport that is built on failure. Where else can you work competently at a thirty percent and be considered as one of the tops in a profession?

It is also supposed to be fun, and the Indians have had their share over the last three games in which everything has clicked. Things are good; probably unsustainable, mind you, but things are fun to watch at the moment.

But when fun meets absolute desire is mixed together, and when it comes in the form a 42 year-old fading slugger doing whatever he can to add a few points to his average in a rollicking 14-2 game of homerun derby, we can only hope that Giambi’s effort made an impression. I found that play as memorable as the litany of big-balls sprayed all over the yard. It doesn’t matter what the score is; if you put the ball in play, you need to bust your butt down that line. Effort equals the reward.

Giambi knows his career horizon a player is nearby, but he showed last night why he is on this team. Sometimes mentoring isn’t solely imparting the knowledge. He showed it by his actions, too. Sometimes the most seemingly meaningless means all that much more.



  • The Doctor says:

    I was hoping you’d at least provide a counterpoint to the effect of “why the hell is a 42 year old sliding headfirst for a single in game where we’re up 12?”. This was beyond stupid from Giambi’s perspective. This seems to be like exactly the sort of thing NOT to teach our young players.

    I hope if it had been someone quasi-valuable doing it, you’d have been (rightfully) angry at the pointless risk.

  • Chris Burnham says:

    There’s always the other side.

    A leader of the team hustles even when he clearly didn’t need to and that is…bad? And no, I wasn’t mad when Bourne did it. I don’t think any of us were.

  • The Doctor says:

    There’s a difference between hustle and “completely needless risk”, to me. I’m just saying, what if this was Santana doing it, he blew out his arm somehow, and was out for the year? Everyone would be (understandbly) outraged at the foolishness of it all. ESPN would spend days blathering about how stupid he was.

    While the Bourn situation was fundamentally different (1-run game versus a blowout), I’d still personally rather lose one game than risk serious injury to our tablesetter.

  • medfest says:

    It’s baseball ,not chess,you’ve got to compete physically and sometimes you make the wrong/hazardous choice in the split second you have to decide.To criticize a player for hustling and playing hard is the worst kind of second guessing.

  • Mike Witczak says:

    Either way, it was just fun to watch!

  • Jeremy says:

    @ Doctor: Hello? You play to win the game! You play that way all the time. Not some of the time, not 3/4 of the time….all the time. You play to win the game. I understand your point, but if you’re an athlete and you’re out there playing not to get injured, you’re either going to (A) be ineffective and make mistakes; or (B) actually get injured. Don’t think, just play and have faith.

    If a player makes a mistake because he’s arguing with the ump, or not running it out, or sulking while play is still going on…..THAT will irritate me. I’ll never be irritated with a player that gets hurt trying to help the team. I understand the big picture, but I think in order to stay in this all season, we need everyone focused and on the same page. Things like that from veterans set the table for that to happen om a clubhouse.

    As the great Charlie Manual once said: “Mmpshu grish um ferda mmph.” lol

    Go Tribe

    • Mary Jo says:

      It’s the difference between the old way of “you win a trophy because you WON the trophy” OR the new way of “you get a trophy because you played the game and everybody gets a trophy”. If you don’t play the game with your heart and soul full-speed you contribute to the wussification of competition.