“Slump? I ain’t in no slump… I just ain’t hitting.” Yogi Berra, 1957
Every hitter has gone through slumps. Even the greats. But you know what WE have that Yogi didn’t? The Internet. That’s right folks. When we have a problem to solve in our modern world, we consult with Google.
So, in my attempt to help the Orioles break out of this terrible hitting slump, that’s exactly what I did. And, man, you wouldn’t believe all of the advice out there in cyberspace. Now, I put in my standard caveat – you can’t believe everything you read on the Internet. But with the O’s in the midst of an eight-game losing streak where the entire team is batting a paltry .226, I am willing to try anything (and hopefully they are too).
There are all sorts of things the Oriole’s hitters can do if this lack of hitting is all in their head. For example, they could purhase Dr. Jay Granat’s three-CD set 101 Ways to Break a Hitting Slump - for just $99.95. The first CD will teach them Eight Ways To Stay Relaxed At The Plate. I don’t know about you – but that has piqued my curiosity. Are we talking massage therapy in the dugout? Not sure. In the second CD, the guys will learn How To Stay Confident In The Dugout, In The On Deck Circle And In The Batter’s Box. This reminds me of Nuke LaLoosh in Bull Durham and how he wanted to “announce his presence with authority.” Maybe if our hitters can remain confident in that long journey from dugout to batters box, we can break the lid right off this slump. And finally, Dr. Granat has saved the best CD for last: How To Stay Focused When You Face A Tough Pitcher In A Pressure Situation – Plus 61 Tips To End Your Slump Now. Ok, I think the O’s should cut to the chase, and check out the 61 tips. Hmmm 61. The same number as the number of home runs Roger Maris hit to break Babe Ruth’s single-season home run record. Coincidence? Probably, but still…pretty cool.
So the Oriole’s could probably afford a CD for every hitter on the roster. They could watch in the clubhouse and on flights to away games, but, as the site so dutifully points out: Do Not Play These CDs While Driving A Car (I kid you not).
If the CD’s don’t do it, the O’s might want to try hypnosis. Yes, there are all sorts of places willing to help the Oriole’s by hypnotizing them. Sportshypnosiswest.com says:
You must have cleared your mental baggage and belief system about slumps from your unconscious mind. This will allow you to stay focused on the task at hand and play ball in the moment. Worry and doubt just don’t appear and the slump ends as fast as it started. We do this together in my office or by phone hypnosis.
Sounds good. If they can really make “worry and doubt” disappear, this might be a good solution for us fans too. It IS a long season, after all.
Finally, the Internet tells us that maybe the Orioles just need a change. When it comes to hitting slumps, the LiveStrong website says,
If your normal approach to batting isn’t working, switch something up. Try a different bat, stand in a different spot in the batters box, switch batting gloves or alter your stance a little bit. These can have both a mental and physical impact.
I believe this “change” theory can apply to us fans too. So the next time you are home watching the O’s on tv, here is what I want you to do: sit on the other side of the couch. Go to the bathroom in the middle of the fourth, instead of the fifth. Have nachos and soda instead of pretzels and beer. And, if all else fails, visualize the Orioles getting some hits. It’s got to happen soon.