Lessons Learned

For the most part, people watch sports for entertainment. Fans enjoy watching the players do all the amazing things that the common spectator can't do - run fast, hit the ball far, jump high, throw the ball hard. But every once in awhile, something happens on the field that goes beyond entertainment. The game becomes a learning experience as the athletes show us how to achieve things that everybody can do. Last Tuesday night's Twins vs. Tigers game in Minnesota was one of those games.

Battling Back: Throughout the course of the game, each team held the advantage. Detroit went up early, taking a 3-0 lead. But Minnesota kept fighting back and eventually took a 4-3 lead in the 7th inning. But Detroit wasn't ready to quit, they came back to tie the game at 4-4. It stayed that way until the 10th inning, when Detroit took a 5-4 lead. Minnesota, however, again tied it up at 5-5 in the bottom of the 10th. Finally, in the 12th inning, the Twins scored the winning run and walked away with a 6-5 victory. At different points in the game, both teams found themselves down. But each time they came back and never got discouraged.

Learning from Your Mistakes: In sports, there's only one way to get over a mistake. To learn from it, come back and keep trying hard. One of the big mistakes in the game last Tuesday was when Detroit's left-fielder, Ryan Raburn, missed a diving catch in the bottom of the 10th inning. Minnesota's Michael Cuddyer wound up on third on the play, and eventually scored the tying run. Raburn was able to redeem himself later in the inning, when he threw out Alexi Casilla at home plate. If Casilla had scored, the Twins would have won the game right then. Raburn was able to shake off his mistake and make a game-saving play. Casilla, a reserve player for the Twins, was also able to bounce back from his mistake. The next time he got up, he ripped an RBI single that won the game for the Twins. Both Raburn and Casilla never hung their heads. Instead, they took advantage of the next opportunity to help their team.

Giving It Your All: Every player who took the field for the big game was trying as hard as they possibly could. Fans could tell by the way the players hustled around the field and got excited for big plays. Even as the game extended long into extra innings, the players left everything they had on the field. They were tired, emotionally and physically. But they stuck it out until the very end, never giving up.

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