Monday, October 20, 2008

The advantage of remaining cool under all circumstances

In contrast to White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen, Tampa Bay manager Joe Maddon, who last night guided his Rays into the World Series, tries to not get too emotional in the dugout.

According to this note on the NY Times baseball blog:

Maddon is like Joe Torre in the dugout: stoic, calm and unemotional. Maddon explained how he once read that Bill Walsh, the football coach who won three Super Bowls with the San Francisco 49ers, imagined that he was behind a piece of glass when he coached. That glass separated the emotion of what was happening. That is what Maddon tries to do.

"Now, there’s times I’m going to tell you, man, it gets a little bit more difficult than that," Maddon said. "But, theoretically, I like standing behind that piece of glass as often as I can and just try to do what the appropriate thing is at that moment, void of emotion."

By eliminating the emotion, Maddon said he can think more clearly.

"When you’re playing in Fenway Park and some of those venues, my goodness, it gets nasty," Maddon said. "The biggest thing is to attempt to think, as you would, like you and I are talking right now."

Don't misunderstand. I love Ozzie's passion and honesty. With Coach Guillen, what you see is what you get. There's no false front. And I was raised by a father who was fiercely passionate as a coach and as a person.

But in the words of Thomas Jefferson: "Nothing gives a person so much advantage over another as to remain always cool and unruffled under all circumstances."