Double Door Surface Bolt - It's one more matter to succumb to that particular label as easily as A.J. Burnett did this weekend. His conduct on Saturday was a clear indication that not only does he pitch with all-or-nothing results, however he also pitches with an all-or-nothing mentality. And the worst part is, he shows no signs of fighting to rid himself.
Rather than seeing this weekend as an opportunity to prove he can scratch and claw to maintain his team in a match despite a bad start, Burnett let his emotions get the very best of him. This weekend it became apparent that Burnett doesn't have want or the focus to pitch in grind-it-out circumstances. It seems that he feels if he doesn't have a gem going by the second inning, what's the point? The match is a lost cause.
At 33, Burnett should also understand some other things. He should understand that most great sportsmen rise to challenges and bear down when things get tough. He should know that it is every starting pitcher's job to give his team a chance to win every time he takes the mound. He doesn't have to control in every excursion. Occasionally his job will be to keep the match close. Occasionally his job will be to keep his own offense.
Above all, itis a starting pitcher's job to give attempt each time he's called on to pitch. This doesn't merely mean physical effort. Mental effort is meant by this. This implies tossing to the ebbs and flows of the match. Suck it up like Burnett did on Saturday in case you give up an early lead and give your team the opportunity to come back. Do not let your mechanics get lazy as a result of concentration and lost focus. And certainly, don't lose control of your emotions.