Coca Cola Double Door Refrigerator - It is another matter to succumb to that particular label as easily as A.J. Burnett did this weekend. His behavior on Saturday was a clear indication that not only does he toss with all or nothing results, but he also tosses with an all or nothing attitude.
Rather than seeing this weekend as a chance to show he can claw and scrape to help keep his team despite a poor start in a match, Burnett let his emotions get the top of him. This weekend it became increasingly apparent that Burnett doesn't have the focus or desire to toss in grind-it-out circumstances. It appears that he feels if he really doesn't have a jewel 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 realize that it is every starting pitcher's job to provide his team a chance to win each time he takes the mound. He really doesn't have to dominate in every outing. Occasionally his task would be to keep the match close. Occasionally his task would be to keep his own offense within striking distance.
Most importantly, itis a starting pitcher's job to provide effort each time he is called on to toss. This really doesn't merely mean physical effort. This means mental exertion. What this means is tossing to the ebbs and flows of the match. Like Burnett did on Saturday should you give up an early lead, suck it up and give your team a chance to come back. Don't let your machinists get idle as a result of concentration and lost focus. And definitely, don't lose control of your emotions.