A game played in the dirt. A game so engrossed in getting dirty that old time visiting baseball uniforms were originally dark colors that would hide the dirt because when players were on the road they could not launder their clothes.
Thus we have home whites and road greys.
Original baseball uniform decisions were based on dirt! What a wonderful way to make decisions. A baseball player is meant to get dirty.
Major League Baseball’s all-time stolen base leader Rickie Henderson believed that “If my uniform doesn’t get dirty, I haven’t done anything in a baseball game.”
He was famous for his head first slides into second or third base. My childhood memories are filled with visions of Rickie Henderson’s dirty jersey and clay filled pants.
There are so many opprotunities to help your team when a ballplayer is willing to get dirty.
* Diving back into first base can only occur if you were aggressive enough to take a big enough lead.
* Sliding into second base, third base or home.
* Diving for that ball in the hole to try and help your team.
A simple goal for every young player is to say that “I want to leave this field dirty.”
If you leave the field dirty then you had a successful day. You were involved in the game. You were on base. You were trying your hardest to make that play in the field. You dove for that fly ball and filled your legs with grass stains.
This is a simple game. Get dirty and play in the dirt.
Give me a player whose uniform is dirty after a ball game rather than a clean uniform.
Yes – kids – You might have to learn to do the laundry at an earlier age because your parents might be sick of cleaning your uniforms and practice pants, but it is all worth it.
Play this game the right way and get dirty every time you are on a baseball field.
Until Next Time