Bases loaded, two outs, and a 3-2 count. How is that for pressure? That is where I found myself on Friday night at the Scottsdale Scorpion complex. As a pitcher, you have to learn how to handle situations like this without losing your head. I have learned over the past few years that I have to stay calm and not try to overthrow to get out of tough jams. I was able to get the final strikeout and did not allow any runners to score. It is outings like this that make you a stronger pitcher. It is pretty easy to have a good game when everything goes right, but of course that doesn’t always happen in the game of baseball. I was a little wild when I first got out there and ended up walking the first two batters. But, rather than checking out mentally, I was able to stay focused and do my job. It felt good to be able to escape such a “nail-biting situation” and the sense of relief I felt when I walked off the mound was pretty intense.
Not only was I feeling the pressure, but my parents who came into town for the weekend were also on the edge of their seats. My hometown in California is only a short drive from Arizona, so my parents try to come out and watch the weekend games whenever they can. It is always fun to make things interesting for them.
It feels great to have the first week of the AFL under my belt. I am looking forward to the games this week and am hoping the cooler weather for the day games keeps up.
Hope everyone had a great weekend.
~Brad Boxberger #35