Rick Gabrielly watched his son’s team play a difficult baseball tournament, and learned the meaning of ‘digging deep’ in all relationships.
Last week my son Max played in a baseball tournament down in Delaware.
These ten kids on the Newburgh Knights are so exciting and fun to watch. We always love hanging out with the families and it’s a great time to sit back and enjoy our kids.
But I saw something different this tournament.
I’ve been playing the game my whole life and coached it for over fourteen years. But this was different. These ten kids came together.
They had two games on Thursday, two games on Friday, and two games on Saturday. That was the seeding round for the Sunday championship tournament. You had to qualify to get in and then you could have one, two or three games on Sunday if you keep winning.
So on day one, they won one and lost one. Day two they won one and lost one, and they were faced with having to win both on Saturday to get into the playoff round Sunday.
On Saturday, we were behind in both games and they end up coming back and winning both, which was enough to get us the five seed out of six teams on Sunday—which meant our first game on Sunday is at 8:00am, which means we have to leave the hotel at 6:30am for 7:00am warm-ups. We were just happy to be there, since not all teams qualified.
We win game one—also in come from behind fashion. We were happy to get one because most of the teams were bigger and better than us on paper. We didn’t expect to get further than this, so we were pumped up to move on. We go into game two and end up pulling it out in an exciting come from behind last minute win.
So these kids come together and end up winning the semifinal.
And now we’re going to the championship game.
You play all the games back to back so we really don’t have any pitching left and not much energy. We were also the only team playing in their ninth game since the team we’re facing next got a first round bye. We’re all tired and wiped out going into our ninth game in four days. At any level that’s tough in baseball.
So what made these kids win those kids win those last two games Saturday to qualify fifth on Sunday?
What made them win those first two games on Sunday to get into this championship game?
That’s what I want to talk about today. The ability to dig deep inside and find that magic, that extra something.
Especially on a team.
To be able to lift each other up.
What did these young men find inside each other? Because it was definitely a team effort. Every single one of these kids did something to pick their buddies up. They gave everything they had.
And you know what? The fans did too. The parents and coaches were all clapping and yelling for these young men. It was a collective team effort. Everyone was so supportive.
That’s what I saw that was different.
No matter what happened. The coaches knew just when to inspire, motivate, kick in the ass, they were all connected. They wanted these players to succeed and were behind them even during tough moments.
We go into the championship game basically without anything, no resources other than heart and guts. And we end up taking a 7-0 lead into the fifth inning. Now at this point you may be thinking, “this is a great story.” “It’s amazing that this team pulled this off.” But we ended up losing the game in that same inning 15-7.
We ran out of gas, we hit the wall.
The other team had a bit more gas and earned their victory.
But what I saw from our team was something so much more important. And so much more special.
Every day in our relationships and our businesses sometimes we get to the fifth inning with the lead and end up losing that day. So how do we rally around our partner, or co-worker or our business associates, our customers our staff so that we can become a better team?
And have a marriage, family and business that matters?
You have to dig deep when your partner is down, you have to pick them up. There were lots of mistakes made in those nine games, but if one guy made an error, nobody got down on him. If someone got a hit, there was another guy there to pat him on the back. To celebrate with him.
So you can do the same thing in your relationships. If your husband or wife is down today, why not lift them up? It makes all the difference in the world.
Today when you get to the plate, if you strike out, see if there’s anyone around you who can pick you up. Or if you’re having a great day see if there’s someone around you who needs to be picked up. Maybe one of your co-workers needs to be helped out. Maybe your partner needs to be lifted up.
Go the extra little bit today.
Maybe winning can be defined by the amount of support we give and get.
Today I’m creating a new stat: support given.
Will you lead your life in this important category?
Photo: clamcake / flickr
Previously published on The Marriage Boss