​1. Becoming too much of a fan, instead of a player. Stop reading the papers and forums. Throw away any standings or predictions you see. When you play in a tournament- stop watching too much baseball. It usually makes players more nervous, less focused, and more aware of the crowd and other external factors. Instead focus on your own performance. You are 0-0 now. Standings and predictions mean nothing.

2. Focusing too much on winning. This adds pressure and does little to help you. Focus on quality swings/pitches and scoring runs. The result will take care of itself.

3. Blaming the umpire. Bad calls happen, mistakes are made. You cannot control the umpire, but you CAN control how you react to them. If you thought you threw out a baserunner or pitched a strike, stop complaining and do it your next attempt. If you got called out on a close call on the basepaths, be creative and find a way to reach base safely next time. Control the things you CAN control, your EFFORT and ATTITUDE.

4. Playing like you have something to defend aka playing not to lose. Maybe your team won a district, state, or national championship last season. Go after it again with the same fearlessness. Don’t let last year’s championship slow you down. Take chances and pull the trigger again.

5. Not controlling everything you can control. Better Nutrition and Sleep Habits lead to more energy and a better mood. A good pregame routine helps you play more confidently, relaxed, and focused. Don’t leave these aspects to chance. These little things win the close games.

6. Giving any opponent too much respect. Anyone following HS or college baseball this season should have learned that they ALL can be beat. Go after each opponent with the same intensity, regardless of the team. No one is invincible, everyone has a breaking point, ALL are vulnerable. Expect to win, believe in yourself even if no one else does. “Upsets” start in the Mind of the “underdog”. See it, believe it, achieve it.

6.5 Smoking, drugs, alcohol, dipping, etc. I wish I didn’t even have to mention this one, but unfortunately I see it all too much. In terms of performance, smoking and dipping increases heart rate and constricts blood vessels (obviously poor for endurance) and alcohol decreases testosterone. You are a fool if you think these things are going to get you closer to your postseason goals.