Consistency and Correa

        Carlos Correa is part of a group of young shortstops that is going to be fun to watch for quite a while.  ESPN had a great article about he and Xander Bogaerts the other day, and they talked with Red Sox third base coach about Correa.  Butterfield had the opportunity to coach Correa in the Futures Game a couple of years back and had the quote below to say about him.

        Repeating performance is the difference between a pretty good and really good player.  If you read the blog often at all, you've seen me use the quote, "Consistent behavior gets consistent results," from Harvey Dorfman often.  There's a reason for the quote's use.  It's true.  If you combine two parts hydrogen with one part oxygen, you get water.  A major difference between the creation of water and performance is the lack of other variables in the process.  There is no opposing team trying to intrude with other elements while hydrogen and oxygen mix.  In baseball you can technically have the same behaviors and not be successful every time.  Consistency gives you the best chance of being successful though.  Understanding your influence on performance is critical to developing the perspective necessary for an approach.  Butterfield's quote bares something important to keep in mind in understanding who he is talking about- Major League Baseball players.  It's hard for them to be consistent, and they are the best in the world!  The words serve as a good reminder to all of us working with athletes at a younger level.  There's plenty of reasons why they are rarely consistent.  Rather than dwell on those reasons, however, I think we can help them.  Understanding what makes them successful is one way.  If you don't know what makes you good, you're trying to make water without a chemical equation.  Consistent players are able to explain clearly and simply their approach to an at-bat or pitching.  Can you do that?  If so, you're ahead of many in the game.  If not, you need to be able to.  A second way to help players is to make sure they understand the purpose of what they are doing.  Empty swings, for example, don't help create consistency.  Purposeful ones do.  Understanding what makes you successful and the purpose of different drills and movements won't guarantee the results you are looking for, but they will increase your chances.

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