Ben's Babbles: Chemistry Lesson

October 15, 2011

I write this the rain is pouring down outside, and small rivers are flowing into storm drains around Hood River.

Before the rains even started it was many sports seasons circling the drain.

National sports writers have already spilled enough angst online and print over the the meltdown of the Boston Red Sox in September.

Apparently their chemistry was bad because several starting pitchers were playing video games in the clubhouse and eating chicken and drinking beer on the days they were not starting.

Now if the team had not played terribly to start the season or to end it, this would not have been an issue. Mind you it probably would have been hyped up as a great thing.

Look how fun and loose Boston's pitchers are; that sort of camaraderie is why they are so successful!, would be the refrain.

"The 2011 Boston Red Sox may have been the first time bad chemistry came out of beer, fried chicken and video games," one writer wrote on Twitter.

I agree, mainly because bad chemistry didn't come from that.

It probably came from the Tampa Bay Rays getting hot, while the Red Sox picked the wrong time to get tired, injured and play their worst baseball of the year.

Listen, I believe in team chemistry, I also happen to believe winning and losing affect chemistry, not the other way around.

Losing sucks, and after a loss, there is not typically that many people in a locker room who are happy.

It doesn't matter the sport, or the activity, nobody, not the six-year old pee-wee soccer player or the 40-year old chess player -- likes to lose.

On the other hand, if you lose, nobody's happy. It doesn't matter how many points you scored, or hits you had you always wonder what more you could have done to get the win. In other words, its not fun times.

When losses pile up, everyone looks for a scapegoat. In the case of the Red Sox it was their manager, general manager, and well ... pretty much the entire roster.

After all having someone to blame makes for a much sexier story than an aging roster and bad luck.

It's always funny how teams react when things do go south though. Some emerge on the other side of a rough stretch determined to go back to work. The bad apples are weeded out and everyone gets at it.

Just look at the HRV girls soccer team. They knew they were better than their early season struggles indicated. So they kept at it, beat Woodburn to end their non-league season, and now here they are 2-0 in league playing and beating No. 4 ranked Hermiston in convincing fashion.

Some teams appearantly aren't as confident in themselves.

That's appearently they case in Boston this year, where they late season swoon dissolved the team into a round of backbiting that has repercussions which will last for years.

Good chemistry isn't always necessary to win, but winning always seems to build good chemistry

Log in to comment