Pete Rose is arguably the best baseball player of all-time. The best hitter in most eyes, but the one thing that separated Pete Rose from the others was his ability to never take a play off.
There’s a story about him playing in the 1970 All-Star game. Typically these games are fun for the fans and not real serious. As Pete was rounding third and heading for home plate someone in the outfield tried to gun him down and there was a play at the plate. Instead of running by or sliding and getting tagged out Pete Rose laid out the catcher and knocked to ball lose to score the run. Afterwards, his explanation of the play was simple. “There might have been someone in the stands that had never seen my play, I didn’t want them to think that I ever took a play off. I wanted to show them how hard I play every time I take the field.”
This kind of attitude is contagious amongst your teammates. You CANNOT control the score, the refs, or the fans. But you can control how hard you box out, play defense, chase down lose balls, and get your teammates and yourself good shots. Just do the simple things that you CAN control and the outcome will be favorable.
Remember there might be someone in the stands that has never seen you play. Make sure they see the player that never takes a play off.