Mind Over Sports

ALTERCATION IN OAKLAND A’S CLUB HOUSE INDICATION OF POOR TEAM CHEMISTRY.

Posted on: September 12, 2016

When the Oakland Athletics introduced “Moneyball” focusing on the importance of getting runners on base, I made a prediction at the time that the idea sounded good, but if there was not good team chemistry, it wouldn’t work. And it hasn’t. This past Sunday the Oakland Athletics released designated hitter Billy Butler despite still owing him $10 million for next season. Last month, according to the Associated Press, “Butler went on the concussion disabled list after a club-house altercation with teammate Danny Valencia.”

“Butler acknowledged frustration with a diminshed platoon role in Oakland after playing every day most of his career. He believes he still has a lot to offer”…and I’m in total agareement. Oakland’s manager, Bob Melvin, obviously doesn’t understand the importance of tapping into an athlete’s belief system. If an athlete, such as Butler, believes he performas at a higher level if he plays every day rather than being part of a platoon system, the manager should allow him to play every day. The athlete’s beliefs affect performance, not the manager’s.

Had the A’s contacted me, I probabely could have saved them $10 million. And the first thing I would have recommended would have been to convert the team into one big support group allowing players to air their grievances, something I’m sure they’re not now doing. And if they were, they would not be sitting in last place, 24 games out of first.

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