Plenty of progress is possible in only a short time


As the season winds down, try and stay positive and build for tomorrow.

I know it sounds cliche, and maybe it is; but it’s how we deal with failure and stay grounded in this game.

No matter how the season ends in DC, there will be some who wish to break down the season into numbers and how the team finished.

Once again, I will remind people that it only takes a year to turn a negative into a positive.

Let’s take Tampa in 2007. They finished the year with 66 wins and 96 losses and finished 30 games back in last place. But they didn’t let 2007 stand in the way of 2008, and they went out, stuck together, improved 31 games and won 97 en route to winning the toughest division in Baseball, the AL East.

This year’s great story has to be the Texas Rangers: 79-83 in 2008 and they finished in second place in the AL West, 21 games back of the AL West winning Los Angeles Angels. They had the best offense in 2008 and the worst pitching staff in the American League.

They hired pitching coach Mike Maddux from Milwaukee and now they are ranked fourth in the AL in pitching. They have one veteran starter, Kevin Millwood (371 starts), and four young starters with around 140 starts combined. One of the best of the Young Bucks, Scott Feldman is 16-4 and has 51 career starts.

The offense is fifth this year. The Texas Rangers of 2009 and the Tampa Bay Rays of 2008 learned a lot from failure and chose to be positive and focused the following year.

It’s not just adding talent to rosters that helps winning (although it can’t hurt); it’s learning every day, being prepared for every obstacle, applying tough lessons to future games and not letting a few rough patches get in the way.

I like a lot of what I’ve seen this year, but it’s not up to me. It’s up to everyone involved with the team - the coaches, the media, the organization, and most of all the fans. If everyone stays positive, it can be done.