A friend often reminds me of that truism, one that was taught to me when I was still playing baseball myself. When I pitched, I was taught to “throw it, don’t aim it,” which sounds a little strange on its face. The concept is simple and makes sense: focus on your mechanics – grip, windup, turn, knee raise, stride, release point, follow through, and so on – and let the results take care of themselves.

I was recruited to play baseball at Duke by a coach who was fired before I arrived, and my freshman season of 1988 I batted .191 for a Duke team that finished 10-37. Not good by any measure.

The new coach suggested I stick with football, and there ended my baseball career at age 19.

The picture above with Duke’s current coach, Chris Pollard, sums up the premise that “you can’t aim it” for me.

Here I was, 34 years later, addressing Duke baseball (for the fifth or sixth time), a team which won the ACC Championship last year. I’ve also spoken to professional, college and high school teams in not only baseball but also football, hockey, basketball, and other sports as well as corporations.

You can’t aim it. Just keep pushing ahead with your mechanics (and hopefully it won’t take you 34 years)!

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