No Extra Credit For Trying

Here’s a variation-on-a-theme quote we’ve seen countless times. After a recent Rays’ win over the bottom-dwelling Orioles, which was the Rays’ 157th game of a disappointing – but winning – season, manager Joe Maddon said: “We easily could have mailed all these (Orioles) games in.”


It was a compliment to his players for still trying hard even though the team had been mathematically eliminated from post-season play a week earlier.


Here’s the part I don’t get. Anybody who’s ever played a game where they keep score tries hard. Even if you’re not being paid. It’s called competition. It’s also called pride.


But when it’s your job — your JOB — why wouldn’t you go all out? Moreover, nobody paid to see you intentionally perform below your ability. That’s no longer poor work ethic or a character flaw. That’s fraud.


Unless Maddon was singling out B.J. Upton, no compliments for professionals trying hard — regardless of circumstances — need be proffered.

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